Psalm 121, Isaiah 51:1-3, 2 Timothy 1:3-7

Over the past several months, I have had various conversations with people in different seasons of life. Some of these people are young and raising young children, others have been caring for aging parents, some have been aging themselves and facing unknown diagnoses from their physicians. I have talked with those whose families are struggling financially, whose siblings are fighting for their life, or who are questioning whether or not they are doing this parenting thing right at all. The fact is, life is hard.

There are times we find it difficult to love people who we share relationship with, whether they are coworkers, spouses, friends, or acquaintances. There are times we find it difficult to trust God because of the circumstances we find ourselves in. There are times we find it hard to understand how a God who loves us would allow hurt, heartbreak, and disappointment in our lives.

Trust me, when I tell you, I’ve been there. I have questioned, cried, begged, and pleaded at times with doubt and fear. I have trouble learning how to love like Jesus loves and live like He lived. There are times I don’t even feel like I have the words to pray.

It’s in these times, I am eternally grateful for the words of the Psalmist when he writes, “My help comes from the Lord”. One thing I know for certain, no matter my circumstances, my God is constant. He did not give us a spirit of fear but of power, of love and of self-discipline.

I have a responsibility to make sure the way I feel does not overpower what I know is truth. The thing is I not only know truth but I know the one who is the Truth. So when I am overcome by circumstances of this world, discouraged, and wallowing in self-pity, I have to go back to what I know and not what I feel. I know I serve a God who is my help, my rock, my ever-present help in times of trouble. I serve a God who walks with me on the mountain-top and in the lowest valley. I serve a God who loved me enough to send His son to become flesh to teach us how to live and love.

I have a responsibility to reflect the light of Jesus even when life is hard. Life is hard but the God we serve is good. He is hope, He is love, He is peace, and He is joy. He is all that we will ever need.

Rev. Amanda Watts – Ashwood Church of the Nazarene – Ashwood, SC

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