On Sunday night our family said our nightly prayer. We thanked God for all of the things that he provides for us, we thanked Him for giving us each other, we thanked Him for our baby brother. We thanked him for the sunshine and the park and for Sabine. We meant it. In the peace of the moment, we knew that everything we needed was in that room, where we put our daughters to sleep together. No matter what happens with jobs, or money, or houses, or unemployment-we have it all in this family. I wasn't just saying the words of thanks, I was feeling them, and I know Lawrence was too.
It is so easy to worry about "the plan" to focus on the "how" and to fret about the future. We do need the love and support of our friends and family to remind us that it is going to be okay. I realized that a few weeks ago. I've been spending so much time and energy telling my husband and my mom and my mother in law and Sabine and even our friends that it is going to be okay, that it is going to work out. And I realized, I need someone to tell ME it is going to be okay. And in 5 weeks, no one had said that to me. While I don't always share how much, I get so much of my strength from my faith. When you all ask me, how I do it? It is because I believe that God is working in our lives and has a plan for us and that is how I know we'll be okay.
Yesterday I felt very scared because Lawrence's unemployment benefits got denied - so no more unemployment coming in. And things don't work on paper. I sent an email to a few other faithful friends who I knew would pray for us, and who would understand the kind of support and understanding I would need. Those that would help to encourage my faith and my soul. And the response I got was overwhelming. I'm so blessed by ALL the relationships in our life. By the ones we have right here in this house, by the ones with our parents, and our siblings...our family. By the ones with our friends. Even by strangers who read this blog.
So today, I opened my daily devotional, which is emailed to me each morning. It felt like this was written to me and for me. I couldn't better describe how and why God is helping me through this, and so I decided to post it. To help explain me, but also to have it somewhere to reread so that when I feel like I need someone to encourage me, I can remember that God is always there, and that my trust in Him will always strengthen me.
by Gail Rodgers
God tells us that our joy will increase as our trust in Him increases. This is something beyond the happiness and delight or pleasure found in a particular circumstance.
True joy is a deep and abiding assurance rooted in hope. If worry, fear, nagging, or feeling overwhelmed is what characterizes you on a daily basis, you know your trust in God has probably faded and your hope begins to feel slim.
Listen to God’s promise to you…
“May the God of Hope fill you with all joy and peace, as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” ( Romans 15:13, NIV).
When hope has disappeared off your horizon, check honestly to see where your trust in God is at. Ask Him to increase your faith. Ask Him to grow your faith to believe that…
• He will act on your behalf.
• He will give you strength and wisdom where you are weak and confused.
• He will supernaturally fill you with the power of His Holy Spirit.
• He will increase your hope in Him in every circumstance of your life.
The hope you have in God increases as your trust deepens. This hope becomes an anchor for your soul. It will bring with it a deep source of victory and joy as God works in you and through you to bring His hope to you in your day-to-day world. Depend on His Holy Spirit to fill you with increased faith today.
Father God, I ask today that You will increase my faith in You. I want to trust You with every aspect of my life. I need the power of Your Holy Spirit to work in me to trust You fully for the hope of my future. Help me to move from worry and fret to hope and joy. Fill me today so that I can actually overflow with hope by the power of Your Spirit. Thank you for Your amazing grace in my life. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen