Do you, like me, ever get so wrapped up in handling trials that you feel down without realizing how you got there? I had a hard day yesterday and got so turned around so quickly by the enemy. On Monday, I was on a spiritual high, praising God for His care of mine and my husband’s health issues. The same day, I was made to wear a huge boot for my foot issue that hasn’t resolved, our laundry room pipe busted and we have to have the floor jack hammered and a few feet of pipe replaced, or perhaps many more. Unknown to us until Monday, John’s license was suspended three years ago! That was news to us! He found out when he got pulled over for expired car stickers. The suspension was related to a CDL work certification thing and them not receiving the paperwork that we mailed them twice, all for a CDL certification he no longer needs.
And the expired stickers? That got missed in the shuffle. We requested three times that the car be registered here in Roanoke, but Campbell County can’t seem to make that happen no matter how many people I talk to. I am pretty sure they mailed our plate stickers to our old address. Fortunately, the officer was sympathetic and John was not fined for any of this, but it will take a couple months to get his license back with the DMV slowdown, so he can’t drive for awhile. There are a couple more trials but I will not bore you with the details. I told John that I felt like laughing about it all, but it wasn’t funny! (I am laughing now…it IS funny!) We all have these trials, of that I am VERY sure and yours may be much worse than mine. So how do we stay joyful while trying to handle them? Well, we shouldn’t do what I did and let it weigh us down, lol! We need to use our faith in God.
However…our faith is not faith unless we enact it. So, how do we enact our faith? I think Paul said it best when he prayed for the Ephesians:
I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. Ephesians 3: 16 NIV
Our faith comes from the glorious, rich abundance of God, and not from our being strong enough to handle it all. The more trials we have, the more prayer and stillness we need. That sounds kind of counter-productive at first but it’s true. We need to stop and think about how great and loving God is instead of focusing first on how big our trials are. Paul describes God’s love. I used to think Paul contradicted himself in the verses below:
…to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3: 18b-21 NIV
How can we both know God’s love but it be more than we can think? We can grasp and know and be filled! We do not have to understand our trials to grasp His goodness. Though our joy sometimes depends on our circumstances, His joy and strength do NOT. He is always enough, more than enough and totally capable of filling us with joy, no matter what.
Love and prayers to you all for a blessed day in our Father’s abundant love,