The question the Father asks that cuts directly to the heart of finding JOY is:
“Do you trust Me?”
The doctor delivers the news that your husband, wife, or child has cancer… Do you trust Me?
Things at work have slowed down and they will have to let you go… Do you trust Me?
My spouse has turned away from me and is seeking a divorce… Do you trust Me?
We will not be able to pay our bills this month so we can’t tithe… Do you trust Me?
I’ve tried a hundred times to lose weight but nothing has worked… Do you trust Me?
I do not know how to best raise my kids… Do you Trust Me?
Our actions will prove what we truly believe…
Do we trust Him?
In every situation we face, no matter how impossible it appears, our Father God has given us everything we need to stand!
2 Peter 1:3 says: “His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of Him who called us by his own glory and goodness.”
Any time we experience resistance it has the potential to bring us out STRONGER than we ever could have been with out the experience. I love that God uses physical concepts to help us understand spiritual concepts, like Jesus used parables. Take for example, the bicep, it cannot grow stronger apart from putting it against resistance, like lifting a dumb bell. The muscle fiber is torn down during the resistance phase of the exercise, but during the repair phase it is built back up stronger than before.
As I look back on my journey, I remember periods of time that I lacked joy because my focus was off and I worried about the circumstances in my life, and did not Trust Him. For example, several years ago I cut off the top of my thumb and cut part of my pointer finger in a table saw accident. Since my construction job required me to work with both my hands, and I had a long recovery ahead of me, it was a very scary time for me and my family when I asked questions like:
What will I do now?
How will I work & support my family?
And the question was revealed: Do I trust God?
I now see that Jesus used that terrible incident to change the trajectory of my life, leading me into a management position at work (thanks to the grace and support of my brothers in Christ who employed me at the time). In that management position, I eventually helped plan a “Biggest Loser” competition for our staff. At that time I was at least 35 pounds overweight and gaining. I had no personal goals, I wore the weight of life on my face. I was on autopilot of “eat, sleep, work, eat, sleep work.”
Well, all that changed, I had a goal, I was going to WIN the competition! So I set disciplines in place to meet the goal, I began running, and counting my calories, and…. you guessed it – I won the competition by making those daily intentional choices!
Through that event, I became fascinated with God’s design of the body, which led to acquiring my fitness trainer certification. God had changed the direction of my life in my mid-40’s, giving me a heart and passion to help others to learn to live intentionally and lose excess weight, just like I had learned to do, one day at a time, one choice at a time.
When I was forced by a tragedy to step out into the unknown, life seemed difficult, but by clinging to Trust in God, that time of “resistance” built back increased Trust and Joy! Resistance has equipped me with the strength I need to set up the Ebenezer stone that proclaims, “Till now the LORD has helped us.” (1 Samuel 7:12)
Do you trust Him? JOY awaits…
“…For You have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy. My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me.” Psalm 63:7-8