Have you ever had something come into your life and shake the very fibers of your being? Just like a hurricane comes in with strong winds and blows over trees and knocks down houses and you feel overwhelmed, or floods rush in and you find yourself sinking into despair or maybe lightening has struck in your heart and paralyzed you with fear. I have had all of these things happen to me at some point in my life and actually at regular intervals. If you have only had to experience this once or twice, take a moment to Praise the Lord that HE has not made this an integral part of your training in your purpose. Because God had allowed these things to be a major part of my life, I have had to learn how to maneuver, adjust and get a grip! (One of my favorite sayings.)
I could tell you many stories about how at one point in my life, age 13, I wanted to be dead just because of how horrible my childhood was to me. I could tell you how devastated I was to find out that I was supposed to be aborted and then how I lived but turned around and had abortions. I could tell you of my failed marriage or how my father was not there for me emotionally when I needed him most, or maybe how I have now been single for 13 years after divorce, waiting on the Lord to bring the man in my life that HE knows is suited for me, or maybe how I have struggled with family members misunderstanding me from a very young age. The list goes on and on. Mind you these are the small things, so if you agree that they might bring some pain, some overwhelming feelings and some fear, I don’t know that you could handle the BIG stuff that I have suffered.
Let’s get some great advice from someone who had his world rocked and stood strong as a rock. Daniel. After Judah was captured, Daniel and others were taken to a foreign land. In this land Daniel was surrounded by idolaters--those who worshipped gods other than his God. In a foreign land, in circumstance that we do not understand, in crisis, in the midst of drama or life changes--we have to make sure we hold tight to our God. This was Daniel’s foundation. Although he was stripped from his country and his people he held on tight to the Lord. Daniel could have given in or given up but he remained courageous in the midst of it all because he knew God as sovereign!
Could it just be that Daniel had the mindset that if God is sovereign, then what happens in his life is bigger than just him? Similar to the Joseph story where Joseph’s dreams, although they were about him becoming great and people bowing down to him, had a greater meaning in that he was being positioned to save his family after the hard times of being throw into a pit, sold into slavery and then accused of rape and put in prison. Daniel was a forerunner for others as well. God was working out His plan for nations and individuals. God used Daniel to touch and change many people’s lives in Babylon (sin city, idolaters’ den, material haven, etc).
Maybe you have found yourself in a strange or foreign land, maybe you have had some hard knocks or a lifestyle of hard knocks. I encourage you today to take heart and know that God’s plans are bigger than us. Know that every hardship is not meant to sink your ship, that every rough road is not meant to curb you, nor is every bum deal meant to deal you out. God is sovereign and brings into our lives exactly what will prepare us for our purpose: some good, some not so good and some downright horrible. But if we know that God allowed it, we can rest assured that it will work toward our purpose and if it works toward our purpose then it is a driving factor that will fuel passion to accomplish what God has put in us.
This is how I make it through the storms in my life: I count it all joy….James 1:2 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” You can think as James does also, not that you get excited or happy about the hardship but that you know the hardship has purpose to get you right where God wants you-- in the center of His perfect will….you can find joy in that!
For more information or to sign up for the HE Reigns newsletter, visit: www.hereignsministries.org