When your world collapses around you.

     It’s going to happen. It is inevitable. “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1) It has many names: Calamity. Disaster. Chaos. Loss. Pain, Sickness and Death. Solomon promises our lives will include a “time to weep” as well as “a time to laugh”. Life provides us the opportunity to experience both pleasure and pain. God reigns in the midst of it all.
     Perhaps you are in the midst of a season of despair. Your life has been turned upside down in ways you could not have imagined. The life you had mapped out has been irrevocably changed without your permission. You feel helpless and alone. You want answers. Why? Why has this happened to me?
     Fortunately, God has provided help and hope in His word. He is there to provide divine assistance on our journey through life’s troubled waters. He provides grace to the impatient. He provides comfort to those that are hurting. He provides peace for those that fear what lies ahead. Let us take a few moments to remind ourselves of several of the most important truths found in the word of God that have special meaning when times get tough.

1. You are not alone. 

     Pain and grief can leave us feeling isolated and alone. I felt overwhelmed when I experienced trauma that no parent should ever have to deal with: the loss of a child. I felt isolated, and was certain that no one could understand the depth of my sorrow. That proved not to be true. God understood. Others understood.
“For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted” (Hebrews 2:18)
“There is no temptation taken you but such is common to man.” (1 Cor. 10:13)
     My circumstances, as crushing as they seemed, were in reality “common to man”. Others around me understood, some silently  sharing the identical pain of losing a child. Regardless of your crisis, God and those around you walk these painful steps with you. They understand. They have walked in your shoes.

2. You might not see a purpose on this side of glory.

     Why? We want answers. An often asked question is “Why do bad things happen to good people?” There are some short answers that come to mind. We live on a fallen earth. This sin-scarred planet bears no resemblance to heaven. We should not be surprised by turmoil and uncertainty. The Bible also speaks of the positive power of adversity in our lives.
“Tribulation worketh patience; and patience, experience; and experience, hope:” (Romans 5:3-4)
     We also need to grasp the fact that we cannot see as God sees. He is God, all knowing and all powerful. We are not. We cannot always discern God’s plan and purpose on this side of glory. We have trouble with out eyesight. Paul said it best:
“For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.” (1 Cor. 13:12)
There’s a day on the horizon when all my questions will be answered. When I change my address from terrestrial to celestial, from ground to glory- I will leave all worry and heartache behind for good. 

 3. You are far stronger than you think you are. 

     God has given you a precious promise! 
“God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above what you are able” (1 Cor. 10:13) 
We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. (Phil. 4:13) Whatever I am facing, I can rest assured that God in heaven thinks I am up to the challenge! I can overcome insecurity, doubt and sorrow. No weapon formed against me shall prosper. (Isaiah 54:17)
Put you hands together in prayer. You have got this. You’re a child of the King.