I give up. I can’t do this anymore. I am done.
Have you ever said any of those words? Or words similar? Life is hard and it sometimes presents us with situations that seem impossible. Completely impossible. They are the kind of situations where you look at it from the inside or the outside and say, “there’s no way I can make it through this.”
There are plenty of stories in the Bible where people faced obstacles that were impossible to conquer. Moses faced the sea. Uh, when had a sea ever parted before? Never. Joshua faced those walls. So, when had people ever been able to bring down an entire city by simply marching around it? Never. Jesus faced death. Friends, when had people been able to die and then come back to life after a few days? Never.
Here’s the key. Those three people did not overcome those obstacles by giving it a little more elbow grease. They didn’t get their friends together to complain and find out whose advice was the easiest to follow. Those three people did not overcome their obstacles by reading all the bestseller books on “how to part seas/crumble walls/resurrect.” They didn’t puff up their chest and proclaim their own strength to conquer.
They sought out God and they trusted Him to provide. The stood firm in their faith. Because they chose to seek God first and follow His plan, God GAVE them strength and courage. God gave them power to defeat. God gave them the details to execute. God gave them the words to say and the manner in which to say it.
When we were in the thickness of our crisis, there were several times that I wanted to give up. I just wanted out of the pain and misery. I didn’t have the strength to fight what almost always felt like an uphill battle. I wanted relief. I wanted peace. I wanted rest.
When I felt that way, I would run through scenarios in my mind…all kinds of scenarios. And my mind would always bring me back to what had been there for months and even years….stay and fight. Stay and fight. Stay and fight and love. Stay and fight and love and conquer. That message was from the Holy Spirit. I know it. And, at times, I really hated it. I was so sick of fighting. I was so tired. I felt tortured, mostly because I knew in my gut that was the only answer for me. Stay and fight and love and conquer.
How? Many of you have asked me that? How? How did you do it? How did you keep fighting? How did you stay when your husband was done with you? And here’s the answer:
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9
God had commanded me to be strong and courageous, not to be scared or worried, because He was always with me. That’s how I did it. Sometimes I obeyed that command with pure joy. Sometimes I obeyed that command kicking and screaming. Sometimes I obeyed with tears streaming down my face begging God for relief. But I obeyed. And I did not do it of my own will or my own strength. God provided all that I needed to keep on keeping on. I had to allow Him to do it and I had to continue to invite Him into my heart and place Him as Ruler of my life….but He did all the heavy lifting. I (we) conquered that obstacle BECAUSE OF GOD. Period.
What do you feel like giving up on? It could be something small or something huge? Have you invited God in? Have you asked Him to give you the strength and courage to get through it? Friends, the Lord your God is with you wherever you go….turn to Him and ask Him to guide you and lead you through your obstacles.
I love the overall message given in the above picture. The little group of people on the pier seem to be in their own world, or maybe even gossiping about the guy who is taking the leap. There’s one girl who seems in awe of what is happening. And the guy…He is in it to win it! He is free. He is strong. He is courageous. He is trusting. He’s not terrified or discouraged. What a leap of faith. I kinda just want to cheer for him, you know? That’s what it’s like when we trust our God. It’s a leap of faith…but oh, the joy that comes from it!!
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