Monday, January 17, 2011

Where Do You Look in Your Trials?



I have the pleasure of hosting "In Other Words Tuesday" this week.  Since I get to choose the quote, I decided to use one from a book I've been reading.  It's called Life is Hard by James MacDonald and it's been such a timely read for me.

So, here's our quote for this week:


I've been going through a tough season of trials.  It seems to be lasting much longer than I'd prefer.  My question to the Lord is often: 'How much longer Lord?'.  But the season still has not ended.

I am an intelligent and often practical woman.  I look at problems and try to solve them.  I pray and ask the Lord for wisdom and guidance, of course. 

Due to a changing business, my husband and I have found ourselves in the position of moving out of our dream home into a temporary house owned by a dear friend.  We are down to one car.  I'm clipping coupons and I stay out of the malls.  It's been a bit discouraging and depressing.  I returned to full time work but the job entails almost two hours of commuting each day.  When I get home, I'm so tired and haven't been exercising regularly. 

So, where do I look in these trials?

I look to the Lord.


It would be easy to complain to friends or even become bitter.  I could fight with my husband and constantly question why.  But I've found that there are important lessons to be learned in the midst of trials.  And only this morning, Greg and I sat and talked about all that we've learned through this difficult time. 

God is sovereign.  He knows all that I'm going through.  And He knows exactly when it will end.  In the meantime, I can tell you that I feel His presence even more so during this challenging time.  When I pray and read His Word, He speaks to my heart.  I have no doubt that He will not allow this time to go on any longer than He deems necessary.

God changes my perspective.  I may see the long commute to work each day.  But He gently reminds me that He has provided me with a job involving little children.  For years, I longed to have children of my own but was unable.  I get to go to work and feel the love of 18 three year olds.  How good is that?
  • When I step onto the playground, I'm greeted with "Oh there's Miss Debbie" and lots of hugs around my legs.  I can't help but smile! 
  • I work with a wonderful teacher who is so easy to get along with.  Heidi and I work hard.  But we get to dance and sing and have fun with the children. 
  • I get lots of exercise between knee bends and running after the children.  I've already lost some weight.
  • Little Evan looked up at me as I was helping him form his letters and said "You're my best friend".  It doesn't get much better than that.
  • Three year old Rachel told me "I love you Miss Debbie".
I don't know where this trial will end up.  But I do know this:

God loves me.

I am learning to look to Him and trust Him every step of the way.

If I hadn't gone through this time of trials, I might be inclined to depend on myself, others or things.  But I know where to look now.  How about you?

I invite you to join in and write a blog post on this quote.  You can link up below.  If you prefer, feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.

Blessings and love,



23 comments:

  1. AMEN! We are all learning to walk towards Him more and more when trials come. Walking with you in faith looking for Jesus even in the trials knowing He is there!

    Love you,
    jill

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  2. Our circumstances are very
    different but it is in these
    hard places that we both are
    finding God. We're finding more
    of His love and peace. We're
    being conformed into the image
    of His Son and Our Father will
    work all these things out for
    our good. It is sad to say, but
    I don't know if I would have
    ever sought the Lord with the
    great intensity I have had our
    family not been thrown into
    the depths of this awful thing
    called autism. But through it
    all God is being glorified as
    we draw closer and closer to
    Him.
    Love,
    Sandy

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  3. You are so right, Debbie. I've told the boys (since they were very young) that we may not choose the circumstances we're in, but it is our choice how we react to them. Keeping our eyes on Jesus, allowing him full control, and trusting in Him no matter what.

    Great post!

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  4. Debbie,

    I just love your heart. You are so positive and God-focused....a women of real depth and wisdom. Your faith is so genuine...it's strong... and it inspires me :) I learn from you!

    Those little 3 year olds sure are blessed to have you around! I know that you are making a good and positive impact on their precious hearts.

    I'm praying for you, Debbie. Be encouraged by that!

    Great quote and awesome post! Thanks for your sweet comment on my blog:) Your words always brighten my day!

    Praying,
    Kate :)

    And just as they were telling about it, Jesus himself was suddenly standing there among them. "Peace be with you," he said. - Luke 24:36

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  5. You have traveled so, so far, my friend! Knowing your situation as I do, I can only marvel at your resilience, and at the Lord's obvious grace in your life. You are right on: He loves you!!!!

    And so do I.

    Kathleen

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  6. I am so blessed by the way you are walking this journey Debbie. You have never quit, and you keep on trusting when sometimes you feel otherwise. I know God is going to give new direction and answers,and in the meantime, new blessings are also coming your way... and your steady walk is a testimony to all of us!

    Love you sis!

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  7. Oh Debbie,
    This post was just what I needed as HOPE begins to spring from my broken heart. Last year at this time I was facing hip replacement surgery and GOD took good care of me.
    This year we are facing unemployment after 11 faithful years serving in our church. It is such a sad situation, totally driven by the dismal economy here in Central Florida. But GOD has a plan and I don't have another moment to waste in feeling sad!!!

    I have a gift for you to share with your 3 year olds. Send your address to my email: jcerrico@earthlink.net
    Blessings sweet friend~

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  8. Hi, Debbie -
    You may not know where this trial will end up, but you know where YOU will end up, as you trust Him. Safe at home with Him. God bless you - Marsha

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  9. It is good to get the benefits of time passing...learning, growing and resting. After spending a week failing to look at the positives, I had a crash course in my weakness still being there in seasons of busyness. Glad that those weeks are fewer and farther apart than they used to be!

    Blessings!
    ~Kathy

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  10. I can't remember the quote I had read long time ago where it came from that just because there is dark clouds in the sky doesn't mean the sun is not shining above it...How true in our lives when facing trials, that it doesn't mean He is not there...when He promised that He will never leave us nor forsake us. I always believe that when someone goes through a tougher time, the Lord is preparing him/her for a greater opportunity because that means he/she can be trusted more for higher things...It's not easy. I've been there also when I hurt my neck and couldn't work...One thing I know, He does make a way...He will make a way for you and I believe that in my prayer for you at this moment. What a blessing you are to those little precious ones! God bless you sister and you inspire me to keep looking up to the Lord, as I go through some changes myself. God bless you.

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  11. I love the way you took this trial and turned it around for good, Debbie. I just finished the book myself and it is so helpful. In fact, the reason I purchased it is because of a comment I saw on your blog. I admire your strong resolve, Debbie!

    Hugs,
    Mary

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  12. Ohhh Debbie . . . my heart aches with you, yet rejoices. I can just picture those precious little ones receiving the love from you. How blessed they are! I am so thankful God has allowed this for some healing. He always loves you!

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  13. Debbie, thank you for sharing your heart. Each of our difficulties may be different, but the same God is teaching us all to love him more. And that love shines through you as you face the trials of day-to-day. Thank you for sharing your journey and for hosting us today!

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  14. Thanks for pointing out the valuable lessons we learn in the pain. Truly God is close. This post sings of His goodness.

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  15. Thank-you for sharing your heart, your life and then pointing to our loving God.

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  16. Very good. There are important lessons to be learned in our trials. They definitely are not there as a punishment but as a classroom of learning we all need. Thanks for hosting today.

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  17. Debbie, I'm sorry you're still in this difficult season. I pray it ends soon my friend.

    Praise God for those precious little arms that wrap around your legs. What a sweetness in the midst of the storm.

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  18. Great post....you know I ditto this!! It is also the same words of confirmation I am reading in "Lost in the Middle"...God is still in control and He has us in His hands. So glad this book is ministering to you like the other is to me...now for me to stop struggling in His arms and just rest.

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  19. Debbie - sorry to hear about all the difficulties you are facing. But you are very right! God is in the busines of changing our perspective of those difficulties if we let Him. Thanks for reminding me to put on God's glasses as I look at the things going on in my life.

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  20. I love how you look at all the good things that God is bringing you through these trials! Your trust in Him is so encouraging, Debbie. Thank you for sharing your heart.

    Blessings - Joan

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  21. Hi Debbie! Thanks for stopping by my blog and WOW I am so thrilled that your friend would send you a copy of my book! I pray that it will speak volumes to you! After reading this post . . . I am certain that it will. It seems that you and I are in the same "boat" in many ways. Different situations, but same test! :) I will be praying that you will embrace every moment in your trial as an opportunity to do deeper in your faith, to trust God even more. After all, that's all He wants anyway . . . our faith in Him. I love the quote: "Faith isn't easy, but it makes all things possible!" It's NOT easy . . . but when we learn to be at rest with Jesus . . . well, He calms the storm. Not necessarily in our circumstances, but in our souls . . . and THAT is the GREATEST miracle of all. One day you will look back on all of this and fall down on your knees in awe and wonder as you realize just how close God was to you . . . how every detail was held in His hand and how He walked with you in order to strengthen you for the journey ahead.
    Blessings sister,
    Cherie

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  22. I understand the sentiment of your heart so very much in this post, Debbie. Not long ago, I wrote about some of my struggle with the following words: (forgive the length, but I think it fits with some of what you're saying here)...

    "But faith, unchallenged by unsettling times, never anchors at its deepest level. Faith uncontested by adversity simply resides at the surface of the human heart. Mind you, it is enough to carry you home to Jesus; not all of us require a rigorous workout along these lines. And I suppose, on nights like tonight, I’d enjoy a float on the surface of my faith. But that’s not what I’ve been allowed.

    Instead, I’ve been allowed a deeper dig into the coffers of what I profess to believe. I get the Refiner’s fire, and I don’t mind telling you it hurts; it burns. It purges and it cleanses. And all I can do is surrender to the heat, hoping that the ugly in me gets gone and that God’s beauty in me returns, from the inside-out."

    Keep pressing into the heart of our Father, Debbie. These may be some of the richest times of intimacy you will ever know with him. He will see you through the night...

    peace~elaine

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  23. What an encouraging post! Have you seen James MacDonald's newest book Always True? It points us to God's promises that don't fall apart in the midst of trials, tragedy, grief, suffering...the list is long. A beautiful sequel to When Life Is Hard: http://www.amazon.com/Always-True-Gods-Promises-When/dp/0802458696/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1295646629&sr=1-1

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Am I a kid or what?

Am I a kid or what?

I love this place...Carmel, CA

I love this place...Carmel, CA