2020 started out as a promising year. and many were looking forward to milestone events when our hopes were dashed by a microscopic virus. The whole world came to a stop and a “new normal” slowly evolved. There were some very real losses – of loved ones, sports and awards, graduations – once in a lifetime events. We are all feeling the emotional weight of trying to adjust to this new reality and there is a lot of fear, sadness and stress. The Scriptures remind me to look back and remember His faithfulness and it encourages me to look forward in faith and with hope. God is Sovereign and in control. This pandemic knocked us off our feet but God was not surprised and He wants us to trust Him.
God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble.2 So we will not fear when earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the sea……The nations are in chaos, and their kingdoms crumble!….. Be still, and know that I am God! Psalms 46:1-2, 6, 10a (NLT)
When we are feeling disappointed or experience a great loss it is easy to focus on what we don’t have. Our sadness can over shadow our thinking and darken our hearts. We need to make ourselves still and focus on His promises.
He provides: And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others 2 Cor 9:8
He is faithful : The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease.23 Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning.24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!” Lam 3:22-24 (NLT)
We can trust Him: Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. John 14:1 (NLT)
He gives real peace: I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid. John 14:27 (NLT)
I grew up going to a small Baptist church that loved singing hymns. There is often a story behind the hymns and the words convey deep meaning. I remember feeling such joy when we would sing a peppy favorite like Count Your Blessings. These words ring true to our situations today.
Do you feel tossed around by life- Are you discouraged thinking all is lost- Are you burdened with your load of care – Do you look around you thinking life’s not fair – If this is true: “So amid the conflict, whether great or small, Do not be discouraged, God is over all; Count your many blessings, angels will attend, Help and comfort give you ‘til your journeys end. Count your blessings, Name them one by one Count your blessings, see what God has done! Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your many blessings, see what God has done!” (song by Johnson Oatman Jr. & Edwin O Excell)
This holiday season will definitely be different! Gatherings will be smaller and you may even find yourself missing the familiar clamor and drama. God is not finished with you yet! This is not the end of your story because every day, week, season holds a new chapter. No matter what situation you are in these ending days of 2020, be grateful for the blessings.