So Much More Than Words 

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  • ckstubbswrites


I'm sure many of you may have read the title to this blog and respond with an eye roll. To be honest, I don't blame you. A few days ago, I would have done the same thing. You see, for years, I've been hearing the phrase, "Don't worry, it will get better". At first, it was a source of hope for me during my hardest moments, but as days turned into weeks, weeks to months, and months to years, that phrase just didn't cut it for me anymore.


Overtime, I began to ask myself, "Will things really get better?" This was my question a few days ago during my time with the Lord. In the moment, I felt really burdened by my present circumstances. I felt weighed down to the point where I didn't even know what to pray, so opened the Psalms and began to pray them. I connected to the Psalms that I read, because just like me, the authors were very raw and real with God in regards to how they felt. After praying, I ended up flipping through my Bible randomly and it fell open to Jeremiah 29:11. In the moment, I merely skimmed over the verse, because truthfully, it's a verse that we see almost everyday. We're bombarded with the idea that God has a plan for our lives, so much that we begin to take its truth for granted. This is what I did, until the Holy Spirit told me to really read the verse and consider what it meant for my life and my present circumstances.


Jeremiah 29:11 (HCSB) reads, "For I know the plans I have for you”—this is the Lord’s declaration—“plans for your welfare, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." I read the verse over and over, and examined it in light of how I felt at that moment. As I did this, I could feel the sorrow and the discouragement lift, and in its place, came peace. I knew within myself that God has a plan for my life, and no matter how challenging life may seem now, His plans for me are still good. After coming to this realization, I stared out the window at nature, like I often did, and I felt God speak quietly to my heart: "It will get better." Looking up at the sky, I let those words comfort my weary soul, and I pray that they will comfort yours as well.


"It will get better."


I don't know what you're walking through today. I don't know what season of life you may be in today, but I want to encourage you that things will get better. I'm not just saying that to make you feel better, I truly believe it because God says so. As children of God, we are not exempt from walking through hard seasons, but God has a purpose in it. Romans 8:28 (HCSB) reminds us that, "We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God: those who are called according to His purpose." If you love God, then He will work all things together for your good. It may not feel good right now, things may not look good, but God will work all things together for your good.


Trust that whatever you're walking through now is not the end of your story. Better days are ahead. Weeping may endure for the night, but joy comes in the morning (Psalm 30:5). God is with you. It's going to get better.

  • ckstubbswrites


Have you ever been blind-sided by something? Maybe it was an unexpected blessing, or even an unexpected problem. I think at some point in our lives, we've all had to face situations that we didn't see coming. One that I have had to face is an unexpected health issue. I've always been the person who rarely got sick. You know those people who would be walking around completely healthy, while everyone else is sneezing and coughing? I was the healthy person in those scenarios. Never once did I ever think that I would be confronted with a health issue and have to walk through my own journey to healing in my body.


About a year ago, I began to experience symptoms that weren't overly concerning, but I was still instructed to see a doctor. When I did, I found out that the symptoms were a result of acid reflux. Prior to this, I never experienced acid reflux pain, so it was all fairly new to me. After multiple consultations, I was confronted with a diagnosis of GERD, a chronic digestive disorder. For this, I was prescribed several medications that weren't helping relieve my symptoms. So, for about six months, I have had to cope with adjusting my eating habits, taking different supplements and pushing through chronic chest pain and frequent abdominal pain.


Truthfully, I questioned whether or not to share this, but my desire is to encourage anyone else walking through their own trials. Since all of this began, I've been standing on the Word of God, and deep down, I know that healing is my portion. I don't, for a second, believe that God has called me to live a life where I am in constant discomfort and pain. That is not the Father that I know Him to be, but I'd be lying if I said that there hasn't been days where I laid in bed crying out to God. There has been many, many days like that--days when I told God that I didn't see any of this coming and the reality of having to walk through it is very hard.


Can I tell you something though? While much of this has been hard, I've never experienced Jesus in a more beautiful way. Whenever I find myself overwhelmed by my situation, I feel Him comforting me. Whenever I'm tempted to doubt that He will heal me, He reminds me of His precious promises of healing, and there are plenty of them. Through all of this, He has encouraged my heart and brought me peace. To tell you the truth, at this point in my journey, I find myself repeating often, "My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart, my portion forever" (Psalm 73:26).


I certainly did not see any of this coming. A few years ago, I never would have imagined that this would be a part of my story, but God saw it coming. God knew. He knows my end from my beginning. This may have taken me by surprise, but not Him. Today, I'm still on my path to healing, and honestly, some days are tougher than others, but I find peace and surprisingly, so much joy in knowing that Jesus is with me. I am not alone in this. I can hold on Isaiah 41:10 with confidence, knowing that the God who has been walking with me up until now, will continue to remain faithful to me. In the meantime, I will rejoice. I will trust. I will pray. I will hope. I will believe. I will wait on the Lord.

  • ckstubbswrites


During my quiet time with the Lord about a week ago, I found myself following my usual devotional pattern. I prayed, asked God to speak to me through His Word, and I opened my Bible. As I read though, I kept feeling a tug on my heart for repentance. I couldn't think of anything overt in my mind that I did wrong (How prideful of me, right?), so I kept on reading. This went on for a few seconds until I felt the tugging become stronger than before. I knew there and then that I needed to close my Bible and just listen.


God immediately began speaking to my heart about my desires--the things that I've been praying about, and believing Him for. He reminded me that there is nothing wrong with having desires, but He also revealed to me that overtime, I began to focus more on having those desires than desiring Him. As I sat on my bed listening, I was confronted with the question, "Am I seeking Jesus because of what I think He can give me, or do I truly just desire Him?" I thought about this question and immediately felt a wave of grief. I grieved because deep down, I knew that yes, Jesus was my first love, but as time passed, that first love fire became dim.


In that moment, I was confronted with the fact that I had been idolizing my desires more than Jesus, and in the process, I grieved Him. Sitting on my bed, I could honestly feel the pain He felt at my waywardness, and I wept. I wept, and I repented. I have been walking with Jesus for almost ten years now, and during that time, there were many moments where I felt Jesus' heart, but in this moment, I experienced Him in a way that I never have before. It was as though He wanted me to know how my actions made Him feel, and this brought me to my knees.


After repenting and asking Him for help in this area, I knew that God wanted me to share my experience. He placed it on my heart strongly to share so that His people may examine themselves. Have you become more concerned with your own desires than strengthening your relationship with Jesus? Are you seeking Jesus' face, or just His hands? Right now, you might be aware that your priorities have shifted, or maybe, like me, you've ventured onto the wrong path and realize that God is calling you back into alignment. Wherever you are now, I encourage you to firstly repent, and then return to your first love. Return to Jesus. I chose to title this post, "Its All About Me", because God helped me to understand in that moment that I made my life all about me--my wants, my desires, my dreams, my terms. To the average person, this way of thinking is normal, but as a child of God, it's really not about us anymore, it's about Jesus. His desires, His will, His way. If we're honest, many of us don't want to hear that, but this is the reality of the gospel (Mark 8:34).


I encourage you today to ask God to make His desires your desires. This has been my prayer since having that encounter. Yes, many of my desires are still the same, because truthfully, they were given to me by God. However, the way that I view these desires have changed. I no longer place them above my desire to be with Jesus, to know Him, to grow in Him, to love Him, or to obey Him. I'm not saying that I am perfect in this; in fact, I'm far from it. However, everyday, I am praying for God to change my perspective from "It's All About Me", to "It's All About Jesus", because it truly is all about Him.


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© 2020 by Christna K. Writes