God's Promise

I have a plaque in my living room above the TV that I bought when I started my life over after my divorce. It says, "God didn't promise days without pain, laughter without sorrow, sun without rain, but He did promise strength for the day, comfort for the tears, and light for the way." At Oma's service, there was a poem based on this premise in the memorial card. I think many of us have heard or said, "God doesn't give you more than you can handle." Unfortunately, that's not true. That's a misinterpretation of the following verse from 1 Corinthians 10:13 (NIV):
No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.

The promise lies in Him being there for you or "provid[ing] a way out so that you can endure it." It requires us to seek Him. I believe that until we have fallen down, we don't always remember to look up. To seek the One whose ways are higher than our own.
  A girl I went to Catholic school with committed suicide Wednesday morning. Her best friend had talked to her Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday and said she'd sounded upbeat; there were no indications that this was coming. Yes, our friend had had some challenges in life, but when we'd had our girls night out in December, it seemed that things were turning around and coming together for her. She asked me if I was still going to my church, Bay Presbyterian, and I told her I was. I see that 21 days ago she joined that group on LinkedIn. It's strange when our lives are reduced to what is left behind in our publicly available social networking updates. I sit here attempting to reconcile and wrap my head around a decision to end ones life; a life that is given as a gift to us by a God who loves us. A God my friend and I both knew and sought in our lives. 

During a more difficult time, this friend told my about the challenges she had with the Catholic church and some hurts it had left in her life. Things I knew well. I sought healing in truly KNOWING and having a relationship through Christ which I had long been lacking and desperately desired. I shared my thoughts, my faith, my hopes, and God's promises with my friend. That was 18 months ago. The problem is, sometimes we forget to look up. We forget that in these desperate times there is MORE.  Yesterday I read this verse (Ephesians 1:18-19) and was reminded what that more is: 
I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which [God] has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. 
He has a plan for us. And sometimes in the darkness we feel surrounded by, engulfed in, we cannot see the light shining through. It's there, my friends. He promises that. He is never far. He is as near as you allow Him to be. Seek Him. Know Him. Let Him love you, heal you, and bring you the peace that you so desperately long for. Remember, "Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him." (James 1:12). This is just a moment; a season of your life. We all encounter things that seem too much to handle, but the purpose of that is to show you that you need to seek God. He will answer your need. It may not be in a way that you expect or understand, but know He will answer. I pray that you will find and know all your needs met in the Lord's arms!

"We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed." (2 Corinthians 4: 8-9)


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