Disappointment. Devastation. Heartbreak. These emotions seem to be on repeat still especially after a year like 2020 and just a couple months of 2021.
What do you do when the bottom falls out? In other words, when life comes at you and you’re faced with a difficulty, how do you handle it? Here are a few things you need to remember about God and His character during these challenging times.
1. God’s grace will be sufficient for you.
When God led the Israelites through the Red Sea and into the wilderness, He gave them, each day, their daily bread. He rained manna down from heaven and instructed each family to gather exactly as much as they needed—not an ounce more. If they had any left over, they were to throw it out instead of save it for the next day. Why? Because God wanted his people to trust him daily for each day’s provision.
Today, he provides for us in the exact same way. In Matthew 6:34, Jesus told his disciples, “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” God faithfully provides us with the grace and the strength we need to get through each occasion as it comes. Jesus told us not to worry about tomorrow because we don’t have tomorrow’s grace yet. We don’t have tomorrow’s strength yet. It will be there tomorrow right when we need it and Paul told the Corinthian believers that we can trust that grace to be sufficient for anything and everything we go through (2 Cor. 12:9).
2. God has prepared a way through this trial.
David said, “All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be” (Ps. 139:16). God knows everything you will go through before you go through it. He never purposes evil, but he can certainly use it to draw you closer to himself and to make you more like Christ.
Jesus told his disciples, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (Jn. 14:6). Not only is Jesus the way to the Father, he is the way through your trial. Pray for his guidance constantly. Read his word daily. Surround yourself with his people. Remember that God sees around the corners you can’t see and that he is doing a good work in you, even and especially through difficult times.
3. God will gift you with divine wisdom.
James wrote, “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” Under the influence of the Holy Spirit, James promises his readers three things. First, when you ask God for wisdom, he will give it to you. Second, he will not fault you for needing wisdom. Third, he gives generously. We define wisdom as “the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgment.” Where you have no experience, God gives the quality that comes from having experience. Where you have no knowledge, he gives knowledge. And from that, he gives you the ability to make the right judgment call. And here’s the coolest thing: He gives wisdom generously. To give generously means to give more than is necessary or expected.
4. God’s Spirit prays for you when you don’t know what to pray.
To encourage the believers in Rome, Paul wrote, “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans” (Rom. 8:26). In other words, the Spirit of God takes your deepest heart cries, the ones you can’t even verbalize, and carries them to the Father where they burn before him like incense (Ps. 141:2). When you feel like no one is on your side, remember that the Holy Spirit’s role is to guide you on earth and intercede for you in heaven.
5. God will redeem your trial.
Paul wrote that the suffering we endure on earth is “not worth comparing to the glory that will be revealed in us” (Rom. 8:18). He also said that “this light and momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison” (2 Cor. 4:17). Tim Keller, a pastor and author, says that to the degree we suffer in life we will rejoice in eternal life.
There is nothing you will go through that God cannot and will not redeem. God specializes in bringing order from chaos (Gen. 1:1–2) and beauty from ashes (Isa. 61:3), and he will bring good from your trials, too.
Let’s remember that when the bottom does fall out in our lives, we can ALWAYS run to the Father. His mercies are new every morning and just like the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32), we too can expect God to be holding His arms wide open at ALL times.
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23