Weak is Strong // Faithfully Honest
I'm only 26 years old, but I've been through a few hard hitting situations in life that made me question my faith in the Lord. One in particular was when my Dad unexpectedly passed away in our family home when I was 13 years old. I was getting ready for school when I heard my Mom scream from the kitchen. I ran over there to find her hunched over my Dad's body trying to resuscitate him back to life. I found out later on that he had passed away from his second heart attack.
It was an awful experience... As one of the greatest people, I couldn't understand why he of all people had to pass. He was friends with many people and was an amazing person. I remember asking God,
"Why is this happening? What did I do wrong to lose my father?"
Initially, when we are smacked with a bad situation in life, we turn into a victim. We think we've done something wrong to deserve such a fate. I've done this countless times where I threw pity parties for myself not understanding why I had to go through certain hardships. Now, I realize that the problems of pain I went through were not God's ways of punishing me, but an opportunity to see how awesome he is.
Ultimately, I learned that our battles in life aren't a way to expose our weaknesses, but opportunities to strengthen our faith in the Lord. God can use any situation to help mold us into the strong women/men in Christ we are meant to be.
There was an article I read this morning that talked about how some people just don't understand that if God is such a wonderful and awesome God, why doesn't he just stop all the bad things happening in the world. The answer to this was perfectly stated.
"...Death and suffering aren’t God’s fault—they are the result of living in a sin-cursed world. But when suffering becomes personal, we wonder why God would allow us to suffer in this manner, and why He wouldn’t stop it. God’s Word never promises Christians an easy and pain-free life. Actually, we’re promised that we will have trouble and hardship in this world (John 16:33). The difference is the hope and help we have in Christ."
-Answers in Genesis
God didn't create this world with sin. That happened with Adam & Eve when they made the choice to sin. God has seen his world develop and saw how awful it was becoming. So he sent his son to die on the cross for our sins, ultimately defeating death in the end.
As years go by, I think of my father fondly and wish he was here with us, especially since I'll be getting married next year. I know that God didn't want this to happen and that one day I will see my Dad again. I think about my life since the year my father passed; I see how God has taken such an awful experience and has little by little, made my family and I stronger from the hardship.
Experiencing the loss of a loved one at an early age, I learned to not take anything for granted. I realized life can be taken away at any instant. I think that's why I'm such a corny and happy person. LOL!! I'll be honest and say that I didn't always keep this in mind. I strayed away from my relationship with God for a few years, trying to fill a void of unhappiness with things like partying and affection from guys. I didn't understand that all I needed to do was turn to the Lord during this time. Once I did, I was found in grace, love & strength. I was able to see a different perspective of my Dad's passing and grow from the experience. After all, my Dad lived his life to the fullest, so in memory of him, I should follow suit by being the best version of myself everyday.
Looking back on this situation is a great reminder of how we can always learn from the hardest parts of life and that God will expose the strongest sides of ourselves, like in 2 Corinthians 12:
“But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
-2 Corinthians 12:8-10
With that in mind, take heart. Some of the situations in life completely suck, but we don't have to fall, roll over and stay on the ground. Rise up and know that you can turn to God. Having hope in the Lord during our trials is an opportunity for our faith to grow and to see God's wonder; I can guarantee you with 100% certainty that if you wholeheartedly trust in the Lord in whatever you are going through, he will be faithful right back to you.
Praying for anyone who needs encouragement today.