The God Who Speaks To My Heart

There are times when circumstances – everyday tasks or insurmountable mountains – that we face each day can overwhelm us.  Sometimes these situations cause us great grief, immense pain, perplexing confusion, unanswered questions, annoying frustrations, despairing discouragement, and so much more.

I remember one such day that I faced.  I was struggling and so I decided that I needed to spend some time with God in prayer.  But before I could do this, I needed assign the day’s schoolwork for my children.  After getting one started on a history project, I gave another an art project to complete – the painting of some fish.

Then I headed to a quiet place where I could pour out my heart to God.

I am so thankful that He is a God who hears, listens, understands and answers the cries and unanswered questions of my heart.  Often when I bring to Him my problems and my burdens, casting them onto His shoulders, He will answer with a promise from His word that He gives me to sustain me and to give me hope.

And that is what happened this day.

As I was praying, God reminded me of His words in 2. Corinthians 1:3 – 11.  Here Paul encourages us with the truth that to the very degree that we experience trouble…to the very degree that we suffer…in those times and places of darkness we can be assured that we will be comforted by God Himself…

For He is the Father of all compassion and the God of all comfort.

Not only this, but we can be assured that the suffering we go through is for a purpose.  In verses 8 – 9, Paul describes some trouble that he had faced.  In this trying time, he and those with him were…

Under great pressure…

Far beyond their ability to endure…

So that they despaired of life itself…

So much so that they felt like they had received the sentence of death.

Does that at all sound like circumstances that you have faced in the past or perhaps are facing right now?

That day that I was praying to God, was definitely such a time for me…

Yet, in the midst of this dark time came His words of encouragement…

For just as God had a purpose in allowing troubling events to take place in Paul’s life…circumstances that so completely overwhelmed him and caused him to despair of his life because they were far beyond his ability to endure…

He had a purpose for allowing them in my life.

And here is the reason.

  1. Corinthians 1:9 says that this happened so that “we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises from the dead.”

As I knelt before God that day, He assured me that this was His purpose…so that I would more fully learn what it is to trust in Him…the God who can speak that that which never before existed comes into being…the God who gives life to that which was dead…

The God who can accomplish that which man never can…

The God who can accomplish the impossible.

I am so thankful that God refreshed and strengthened my spirit that day.  The trial was not removed, but the burden of weight that I had been carrying was.  He took it from me and replaced it with the precious truth of His promise.

As I went back to see how the schoolwork was coming, I knew His peace and joy in the midst of difficult times.

But the gifts God had for me that morning had not yet ended…

The best was yet to come.

As I walked into the kitchen to see how the painting project was going, there before me was not a painting of fish…

Can you guess what it was?

A picture of Jesus coming out of an empty tomb.

I stood there speechless as the tears began to stream down my face….

How could she have known that her picture depicted the very truths that God had fed my soul with just moments before?

Somehow, in the mysterious ways by which the hand of God accomplishes His purposes, God – by His Spirit – had worked within the heart of my child to will and to act according to His good purpose…

His good purpose to comfort me to the very depths to which I was suffering.

And she had put those thoughts that He imprinted onto her heart onto canvas.

The result?

A picture to remind me that in the midst of overwhelming trials that He allows in our lives, our Father is allowing them for a purpose…

So that we will learn to trust…to rely upon…to put our confidence and hope in Him – the Father of Compassion, the God of all comfort…

And the One who raises from the dead!

IMG_4785 copy