Day 1 Tough Times

1.01.2017 |

Habakkuk 3:17-19
Psalm 9
Luke 1:46-55
Psalm 35

As you might know, I am a mom of a one-year old son and will be welcoming a daughter into our family sometime in January.  There is so much chaos that just happens once you become a mom, that I never before understood, respected, or appreciated.  Moms have a tough job.  My difficult time right now is that I don't know how to be a mom and a wife and a friend and do it all well. I am consumed by my selfishness and ever so aware of my lack of sleep.  It sounds incredibly horrific to type this out, but I need to, for accountability.  I hit a wall.  A mental break down.  I was "done" mom-ing. I feel like a failure.  A lot of the times nothing I try to fix a situation helps, and if it does help, well I go about it in the wrong way with the wrong attitude.  I am really bitter about "losing" my old life in Starkville, or not getting to "do" the things I wanted to do before having kids.  Of course I know I have a wonderful life here in Virginia and my son is one of the most special gifts I could ever have; but, I lost it.  I worked myself into a mental break down.  That is my tough time. And I'm not handling it in a very Christ-centered way.

After reading these verses of people going through difficult times (exile, oppression, slander, unknown future, people hating you), it is clear that I am not responding to this situation how I should.  Mary rejoices and gives thanks. The psalmist rejoices in the God of his salvation and continues to seek the Lord.  Habakkuk trusts that God will make him surefooted even though circumstances are crumbling around him.

They aren't like me.  Whiney, bitter, faithless me.  Scripture is a good mirror, but sometimes your reflection isn't beautiful.

I really like Psalm 9:10.  It says,
"And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek you."  
Seeking the Lord allows us to rejoice in our trials.  Even though I struggle to find the silver lining at a 2AM baby scream-fest, I can know that through it Christ is shaping me to be more like him.  And like Habakkuk, I can rest in knowing that the Lord is my strength, he is my salvation, and my worth or goodness or ability to be a mom or any other thing is not rooted in my circumstances.

God is the provider of salvation. The rescuer of those who trust in him. He is strength. He is the deliverer.  He is great. He is righteous.  He acts in his own timing.  He is a listener.  He sees us.  He is holy. He is merciful to those who fear him.  He is mighty. He is the exalter of the humble.  He is the preserver of life.

The way I am choosing to handle my current situation (albeit might seem small in comparison to others' struggles), doesn't reflect I trust Christ.  I am not giving God the glory through my trial, though he doesn't need me to give it to be glorified.  He is glory.  I am not relying on Christ to be my strength, plain and simple.

There are plenty of examples in my life where a situation or circumstance has resulted in God's glory and it was definitely for my good (even if it was painful or not initially satisfying).

  • Breaking up with a boyfriend
  • Being injured in college athletics six times
  • Following my parents advice
  • Removing myself from a friend group

All of them, though uncomfortable or heart-breaking, resulted in God drawing me closer to himself.  It just took lots of hoops, bells, and whistles to get me there.  For that, I wouldn't change any of those circumstances, because nothing is more important than being drawn closer to the feet of Jesus.  So likewise, in the mess of my current circumstances, I need to stop and thank the Lord, because however exhausting and draining and frustrating and seemingly impossible it is, I know Jesus is desiring to draw me to him and teach me to be more like him.

Take a minute to listen to the song from Shane and Shane "Though You Slay Me" and marvel at the sovereignty of our Lord through tough times.  You can find more great songs from the suggested song list in the back of your New Bloom devotional.

How did these verses speak to you today?

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