Lessons of Hardships

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“Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.”–1 Peter 5:6-7

I watched her scuffle her dainty dancer feet through the crispy, cascade of colorful leaves in the October afternoon. Her head was down, her countenance solemn. Her usually mischievous, quick smile was now consumed with momentary remembrances of grief.  The cute glint in her eyes was now carried away by deep thoughts too mature for her to carry. This slender beautiful black girl with braids tightly wound about her head, a natural leader, a graceful dancer, had just lost her dog….and not just any dog. But this dog was a living comfort to her and her family during a time of mourning.

Her mother, just a couple of months ago, had passed away from breast cancer.

She was a child consumed with grief, confusion, anger….. and it showed. She was usually difficult to discipline, stubborn, mouthy, boldly defiant–but today, the remnants of what had happened over the weekend caused her sensitive, gentle nature to come out. I watched her–closely, looking for an answer.

Then God quietly brought to my heart:

“Hardship, it can humble you.”

Yes, but it can be a great misery to go through.

And at such a young age.

When I look back at the disappointments, setbacks, discouragements, pains, difficulties I went through as a little girl, even as a young woman, I still feel it does not compare with the heart wrenching, traumatic separation of a mother from her child.

Why the tragedy? Why?

This is the same question she asked me, just a couple of days before.

She blurted:

God killed my mom!

 No. No. Don’t say that…..God loves you. 

Then, why didn’t He save her? 

The devil causes disease….

So! God could have still healed her…… 

God could have healed my mom. Why didn’t He?

I do not know why her mother died. Nor could I answer the cause of darkness behind it.

All I could say was: “No. No honey. God loves you. God loves you all so much.”

She quietly took the answer and ran outside.

I know that her journey with that answer will be long, and hard.

But I pray that she will never forget that.

I pray neither will you.

Life can throw unexpected curve balls and punches that we could have never dreamed of. Your life can take unexpected turns and detours, that you never anticipated or planned. But I can not deny this:

God loves you, and will give you double for the hardship, pain and suffering you go through. Yes, there are some things we may never understand. Some hardship that seems unjust. However, even in this state of brokenness, even after all that has been lost, He still wants to bless you, heal you, restore you, refresh you, revive you.

Some difficulties, pains and struggles, may have been as a result of your mistakes, but I  have learned that even with our own mistakes, God in His mercy wants to bless us with more (Joel 2:18-27).

I meditated on this for some time early this morning, and was almost taken aback in awe of the physical, emotional and spiritual blessings God must have stored up, waiting for this little girl.

She may be unaware now, but such a traumatic experience will be turned around for her good, and rewarded with such overwhelming blessings by a God and Father who cares for and loves her greatly.

Yes, though hardship is not what God causes, nor do I think He gives us these debilitating challenges to discourage us, I believe that He allows certain things to happen, so we can grow stronger, wiser, and braver.

It says in Psalm 94:12-14, “blessed is the man whom thou chastenest, O Lord, and teachest him out of thy law;

That thou mayest give him rest from the days of adversity, until the pit be digged for the wicked.

For the Lord will not cast off his people, neither will he forsake his inheritance.”

Do you see? God does not willing want us to suffer or go through pain, but these lessons of hardship give us an opportunity to draw near to God. These lessons of hardships gives us the opportunity to accept the help of His Holy Spirit to direct our paths, so that we can begin to line up our lives with God’s will, and so that He can prepare us for future battles.

You may think that you are being wasted away to nothing under these pressures. You may even feel like you are being stripped of all that you are and have been, but in this breaking, in this humbling you are becoming stronger.

How? When you are weak, then you are made strong (2 Corinthians 12:6-10).

It is only when you become weak in yourself that you find Christ’s strength and power in the weight and blood of His sacrifice. You will find strength in His strength and that makes the difference.

When you humble yourself, listening to God’s instructions, allowing yourself to be led by His Spirit despite the shame, pain and grief you may feel, you are revealing to the world who God really is and who God truly created you to be.

As you humble yourself, allowing God to mold you into a better person,

As you humble yourself allowing trials to test your faith,

As you humble yourself giving God the room to break forth healing, deliverance and restoration,

God will lift you higher! Higher than your circumstances, higher than your way of thinking, higher than your way of life, higher than what you could have imagined life could be!

He can make your wildest dreams come true!

And despite the difficulty, the pain, the hardship, the struggles, God wants me to become who He created me to be. And I can only become who He created me to be when I allow Him to shed, and refine me through lessons of hardship.

But it only by faith in Christ power working in me, through me and for me that I can become all He created me to be.

When I rely on His Power, then I can become all God, My Father and Creator, destined me to be.

Thank you Lord.

I am grateful for Your love and mercy toward me.  I ask You that I continue to let You do what You desire during this time of trials. I pray I humble myself, and rest in Your grace to see me through this. I pray that this little girl still becomes all You created her to be. That you help her, strengthen her, heal her broken heart during this time. I pray she will walk in deep fellowship with you, and receive you as her Lord and Savior. And I pray all who read this will find strength and peace in you alone. I pray they carry their burdens and give it to you. Thank you for carrying our burdens and gives us peace in the middle of our hardships. Amen.


Some after thoughts:

When you are feeling burdened by the weight of your sin, your failure, your hardships and etc, take comfort that:

God promises to never leave you or forsake you (Hebrews 13:5).

God commands us to cast all Your cares, worries on Him (1 Peter 5:6-7; Psalm 55:22; Matthew 11:28-30).

God will give you power to obey Him, and power to complete this time of testing.

God will love you and keep you forever. He can not nor will He ever throw you away.

When I am so consumed in my own grief, I can forget all the souls around me that are going through so much more.

I need to push myself more to pray for others when I get into a whirlpool of self pity.

I ask you to join me in that.

Whenever you are tempted to focus on your hardships, like weights dragging on you, slide them over to the feet of the Father, and then pray for someone else you know is going through a hard time. You can not even imagine how much weight and power your prayer has on their behalf.

God bless you dear ones,

Love you,

Amarachi 

 

© Copyright 2016 Amarachi Wachuku

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