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So many things have been on my mind lately. The terrors of the world. The brokenness of our country. The craziness of this generation. So. Many. Things.
And then there’s my life. We’ve been in the midst of enduring a season of unemployment for over a year and a half now after my husband separated from the Navy last year (more on our story here). It has been a tumultuous, heavy-laden, burdensome journey.
There have been times in this season that I have felt like I have been just one big disappointment after another before God. I’m too weak, too untrusting, too faithless, too worrisome, too unloving, too unkind, etc. My flaws just seem to be all I can see throughout the days. I don’t want to be in this desert any longer than is necessary. I don’t want to be here 40 years if faith would bring us to the Promised Land sooner.
Whenever You Face Various Troubles…Just Stand
Lately, Peter has been on my heart, and specifically a conversation that Jesus had with him as they neared the final hours. Luke 22: 31-32 says,
And the Lord said, ‘Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.'”
Peter was sifted. Peter was shaken…hard. Peter had to be poked and prodded, broken, and built back up in Christ for him to truly walk in the Lord’s goodness, mercy, grace, and love. It had to stop being all about Peter’s strength or moral goodness, and instead transition to being all about God’s strength, integrity, and character.
Somewhere along the way, Peter had to learn to stop trusting in his own ability to handle the struggles of this world, or to be “strong enough” to face the evil days, and transition into knowing his complete fallibility, but God’s amazing Power, Grace, and Strength.
His power needed to cease coming from within and to begin completely being drawn from above.
God’s grace has continued to astound me in this season. As much as I feel like I am failing Him, He continues to remind me that “His grace is sufficient for me.” I don’t think I ever really grasped the essential meaning of this verse until the seasons of trials that have upended my supposed strength and revealed my lacking character. But He says,
My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” ~ 2 Cor. 12:9
What a relief, Lord. None of this surprises you. You know my frame, and I am but dust. Sadly, I do not know my own weaknesses, and they scare me as they emerge, for I know they cause pain and brokenness in this world, which surely we do not need more of.
And, yet You say,
Be still, and know that I am God.” ~ Psalm 45: 10
Maybe brokenness is what we need…because it is in our brokenness that we truly can find You. It is in our brokenness that we realize how fallible and incapable we really are. It is in our brokenness that we realize our deepest need for a Savior, and how truly blessed we are to be loved by an untamed God.
So, if you are in a season of brokenness, unable to fight in your own strength anymore, I encourage you, don’t. Stop fighting in your own strength. Stop thinking that if you were just good enough, or calm enough, or wise enough, or whatever, that your trials would end and all of life troubles would cease. Stop facing the troubles of the day as though we are fighting flesh against flesh. We aren’t.
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” ~ Ephesians 6: 10-13
We are in a war, but it’s a war in the Spirit. It is only with Spiritual weapons that we cannot be overcome. So, just as Job, Peter, Abraham, David, and all the other saints that have gone before us have shown, the truest measure of the fight is simply standing firm in the Truth of Faith, even after a season of wavering, trials, testing, and emptiness.
Yes, maybe this war is too much for you. Yes, maybe this battle is leaving you weak and unkempt. But, YES, He can handle it all, and He can be trusted until the very end.
No matter what evil comes your way, just stand firm in Truth. Even if your flesh wants to war within you, stand firm in Truth and tell the lies to be captive in Christ. When others want to criticize and judge you for your seeming fallibility, stand firm in the Truth of His Amazing Love and Amazing Grace.
No matter what, just stand. That’s all He asks of us.