Friday, January 24, 2014

Hope During Times of Prolonged Suffering - Part 2 - By Jennifer O. White

Hope During Times of Prolonged Suffering – Part 2

In our last post, we explored the risk of hoping when suffering seems to be endless.

My friend needs to see the ship of her suffering nearing the port where she and her family get to step off. Can you relate to that? Are you watching someone hope for a glimpse of hope in the present circumstances?

Our faith is in God who promises -- hope is very real.

Corrie Ten Boom (a lady who has earned the right to talk about hope during prolonged suffering) once said, ”God doesn’t have problems. He only has plans.”

In Today is Your Best Day, Roy Lessin teaches us that “God makes each day fit perfectly into His plans for you. God made this day so you could glorify Him. He made this day so that He could draw you closer to His heart. He made this day so that you could see your life from faith’s point of view.”

On day 1105 of your debilitating and bankrupting saga, could you see life from faith’s point of view? (I am sure if I were able, it would not be from my own strength.)

These words from 1 Corinthians 13 blew a refreshing wind into my sail as I searched for hope for my friend:

We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!

But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation:

Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly.
And the best of the three is love.
 1 Corinthians 13:12-13 MSG


We’ve explored the faith in God lived out by the suffering Job, Paul, and Corrie Ten Boom. We dared to repeat the words “Today is my best day because God can be trusted with my life.” Let’s look at the best, the greatest of the three words: Love.

God’s love for my hope-starved friend is extravagant and beyond our comprehension. (Ephesians 3:18-20) But what if for the moment, maybe for a while, she can’t grasp it because if just feels like trying to hold Jell-O?

What can we do on her behalf? On your dear one’s behalf?

We can call on His glory strength to empower each one who suffers to know – to experience - the depth of His love while suffering.

We can believe that God IS at work in this one who suffers, and is able to accomplish MORE than we can dare to dream or ask Him to do.

We can dare to dream of what He can do. If He can sustain and rescue Corrie Ten Boom, then how COULD He help our friend? List 1000 ways. Seriously! What more God honoring thing could you do than declare that He is able to do 1000 loving things for your friend. Dreaming of what God is able to accomplish is worshipping Him.

Love that suffering friend extravagantly. Ask God to show you what that looks like in each situation. His glory strength is ready to empower you to ….. show up consistently, pray with big faith, and rally 100 people to join you in interceding, speak blessings into their hearts and those who are enduring with them. Trust that He will supply all of your needs while He uses you to hope on the behalf of the one who is weary of hoping.

Love extravagantly!

Jennifer O. White is an author, speaker and encourager to those seeking a life of hope, peace and confidence. You are invited to join her on a brave life, marriage, and world-changing adventure with Jesus at her blog: Prayerfully Speaking, and her free ebook: Prayers Spoken, Lives Changed: God’s Extraordinary Love in 18 Ordinary Lives. Check out her upcoming book for new brides here.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Hey!! We LOVE hearing from our readers and fellow Church Chicks! Please leave a comment to let us know you stopped by!