Tuesday, February 5, 2008


Have you had a difficult day, month, or even last year?

I sure have. :)

If so, then I hope you would take a moment to read this letter sent out by our mentor from the Keepers of the Home Group, Lori Gammon:

Dear friends,

2 Corinthians 1:3-5 "Praise be to God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows."

2 Cor. 1:7-10 "And our hope for you is FIRM because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort." "We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On HIM we have SET OUR HOPE, that HE will continue to deliver us..."

As I read through God's Word each morning I see sweet, sweet promises of God, I see sins that he wants me to avoid, I see new and more wonderful things about Jesus, I see promises that he makes me that I can cling to in my times of trouble and adversity.

Today's verses are sooo precious to me! Christ's sufferings will be allowed to "flow" into my life. I kind of wish at times that this said "trickle"...but it says "flow" and that does not mean once in a great while...it means pretty steady, at least from what he's allowed in my life! I'm sure many of you know what I mean! :-) I know that I used to say "I can't wait till this hard thing is over!" whatever that hard thing was. But, what I didn't realize is that it will be a "flow" of suffering and trials and adversities. Thankfully it doesn't say "flood!" Although there have been times when it's definitely felt like a "flood!" But I love the next few parts of these verses. Just as suffering flows into our lives, so also through Christ, does our comfort OVERFLOW! I love the words God uses...he allows suffering to flow...but his comfort to OVERFLOW! He more than makes us able in our weakness, to endure by his strength!

You will not experience the fullness of God until you have experienced him in deep, deep trials and hardships and suffering! No hole is so deep that our God is not deeper still! Corrie Ten Boom shared this long ago! God does not send the one without the other. God does not send suffering, without sending an overflow of comfort for us. BUT, we need to look to him and fix our eyes upon him and our thoughts upon him in the MIDST of trials and suffering to receive the outpouring of his grace, love, and comfort! We can wrongly choose to become bitter and resentful in the midst of the trials and doubt the goodness and faithfulness and love of God OR we can choose to believe his Word and believe his character and FIRMLY KNOW and be CONVINCED that God is who he says he is and that he will do what he says he will do....and RECEIVE the outpouring of his love, grace and comfort that he desires to give us! We need only turn to him, humble ourselves before him and reach out and RECEIVE his comfort!

Sometimes we all experience difficult times in our lives that leave us feeling that it is beyond our ability to endure! Paul did too! BUT what we need to purpose to remember is that these trials and sufferings and persecutions and adversities happen in our lives....why? So that we might not rely on ourselves, but instead that we would learn to choose to rely on God instead! It is ONLY as we SET our HOPE on HIM that we will continue to see our character grown, our faith grown and our spiritual maturity grown and that we will experience deeper intimacy with Christ! We all want character, we all want to be more godly and more spiritually mature....how does this happen in our lives? From coming under the Lord and allowing him to have his way in us and in our lives! From allowing him to send us not only blessings, but suffering as well! And He is faithful...with suffering also comes comfort...the comfort of knowing God and knowing his principles and seeing the truth of his Word come to life. We gain comfort from his love, his faithfulness, his grace and his mercy.

These times in our lives are not meant to hurt us but to redirect us and to strengthen us through Christ that he will continue to deliver us from ourselves and our sin and our flesh...to purify us for Himself and to make us more like Jesus!

So if today is especially difficult or hard....look up and remember that this thing, this circumstance, this situation...has come so that you would not rely upon yourself...but instead that you would yield to God and to choose to set your hope on Christ who is seeking to continue to work in you and set you apart and to work out his good pleasing will in your life, redeeming you and sanctifying you and transforming you....in order to bless you and do good to you and draw you ever closer to Him! Allow him to comfort you as only He can! "

Hope this has been a blessing and a source of encouragement!


Kelli said...

This was a wonderful and encouraging article, Lisa! Thank you for sharing it with us and thank you for visiting my blog too. I appreciate your sweet comment!

Short Stop said...

"Thankfully it doesn't say "flood!" Although there have been times when it's definitely felt like a "flood!"

How true is that.

This was SO encouraging to me today. THANK YOU for posting this, Lisa!