A few months ago, I felt like the scripture put your house in order from Isaiah 38 kept coming up. Finally, one day I went to a coffee shop and took the time to study that specific scripture. I learned that King Hezekiah was ill and about to die, so the prophet Isaiah told him, “Thus says Adonai: Put your house in order. For you are dying and will not live.” When Hezekiah got this news, he wept bitterly and said to God, “Please, Adonai, remember how I have walked before You in truth and with a whole heart, and have done what is good in Your eyes.” God gave him another 15 years to live. I am pretty sure 15 years was a reasonable amount of time to get certain things in his life in order.
As I thought about this scripture and have marinated the information before writing, many things came up for me. The truth is that it’s not easy for me to slow down because I like to check off my to-do list. It gives me a sense of accomplishment in life. But I know deep inside that there is more to life than my list. If I found out that I only had a certain amount of time to live, I know for a fact I wouldn’t worry so much about all the petty little things I have to do, but I would be more concerned about being present. I would pray more for my loved ones’ souls to be saved. I would listen for hours to my husband talk, ask more questions, and be fully available when he needed me. I would write out my heart to leave some tangible words for the world to read, and I would let my loved ones know how important and meaningful they genuinely are to me.
By the grace of God, from what I know of, I still have time to live. I am so grateful for God’s word because it’s a reality check to refocus on what is truly important in life.
When life gets complicated, it’s hard to want to persevere. In a way, it feels like something inside of us dies. It can be hard to want to do anything, but today I write to you to tell you that there is life, hope, and stories to share on the other side of your hardship.
Pushing through hardship is not easy at all. Someone who knows this well is a pregnant woman about to give birth and a caterpillar. A woman has to push through to see a new life come to be, and a caterpillar has to push through to become who it was always meant to be.
It takes faith to push and trust that on the other side, there will be life. If you don’t go through this now, how will you know the end result of faith?
Whatever you are going through now, I want to encourage you to keep pushing through the unknown, the pain, the darkness, the confusion, the trials, and the fear. Have faith that choosing to continue the good fight will be worth it in the end. Before the caterpillar becomes a butterfly, it finds itself in a dark place, and before a woman gives birth, the pain seems unbearable, but on the other side, they both realized that it was all worth it and there was life.
There are days when everything seems to be going great, and then there are those days when everything completely sucks with feelings of sorrow, negativity, and a lot of complaining. This is how I felt all week. I tried so hard not to feel discouraged, I even prayed and asked God for help, but nothing seemed to work. I am pretty sure God heard my prayer because my neighbor texted me out of nowhere, saying, “I feel like the Lord wants to tell your not to grow weary in doing well.” And then my husband realized without me saying anything that I was down, and he would encourage me. It was helpful, and it made me feel so loved, but I still felt discouraged. There were these lingering feelings of depression and oppression. I didn’t go through anything too crazy to get me to the point, but this is how I felt. At the end of my workday today, I was just done with the day. I wanted to be mad and remain mad, but at the same time, I wanted to go back to feeling present. I came across a YouTube motivational preaching that I thought might help, but I knew deep down that that wasn’t the answer. Instead, I played some instrumental worship music, and I talked to God and cried freely.
I got real with Him and told Him all the reasons I was discouraged, and I also acknowledged my need for Him. At that moment, I truly realized that no amount of money, accomplishments, love, or gifts could fix my soul’s discouragement. Only God can speak life into the hopeless parts of my being. After praying, I felt that I was supposed to say out loud all the things going right in my life. As I began to do that, the burden began to disappear, and I started to see and think more clearly. Proper encouragement can only come from the one who knows what is hurting us when we don’t have the answer. Tonight I was greatly encouraged by the one who loves my soul, and I hope you have been inspired by reading this and have the desire to talk to God now.
You are not alone!