When we are in the midst of a storm, it is extremely important that we refill our “spiritual tanks.” Challenging times can be emotionally and physically draining. So, it’s important that we take the time to do those things that will fill us up, ensuring that we won’t be operating on empty.
Listening to encouraging sermons and music are two things that are very helpful to me. I also enjoy spending time reading the Bible, particularly those scriptures that speak to my current situation. These are the things that help refill my tank. It serves as a way to remind me of the GOODNESS of God and the POWER of God. It also helps me to have the strength that I need to continue in faith and move forward in the promises of God.
Remembering Past Blessings and Answered Prayers
During these difficult times, it is also important to reflect on and remember how God has blessed us in the past. There is much power that can be drawn from simply remembering how God has blessed us over the years, as well as, previously answered prayers. Previously answered prayers serve as evidence that God has brought us through storms in the past. This gives us hope for tomorrow and the assurance that God can do it again! He is ABLE!
Counting Your Blessings
When we look back over our lives, it is important that we reflect on the blessings that God has given us. We should recall the previous AND current blessings of God. Consider those that we may have asked for and those that we did not ask for. These are the things that will help us to recognize that we are NOT alone. We have hope and help in the Lord and he will see us through the current trial too. It gives us a sense of encouragement to know that trouble won’t last always. It reminds us that God is a prayer-answering God.
One of the things that I try to do from time to time is make note of or record blessings and answered prayers. When I reread those journaled and recorded things that God has done in my life, it becomes a fresh reminder of what God has done in the past and it is also a pleasant time of reflection.
We also need to recognize the current blessings that we have. Many times, when we are in a storm, we actually forget about the blessings that we STILL have, because we are so overcome by the TROUBLES that we are currently experiencing. It is SO easy to miss what is still going well in our lives. It is SO easy to miss God’s favor and provision.
So, this takes INTENTIONAL focus and is also VERY important. In fact, it’s quite therapeutic to practice focusing on the positive as often as possible. We can DECIDE where to place more focus. We can decide what to spend our time, energy, and thoughts on…what to DWELL on. It’s not that the negative won’t come up. It’s just that we can DECIDE that we won’t live there in our minds. God gives us that power, ability, AND permission.
“Peace I leave with you, MY peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let NOT your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:27
“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7
“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Philippians 4:8
We can choose to practice gratitude and focus on the positive things that we STILL have to be thankful for, even though we’re going through a rough time, right now. A famous pastor once said, “We must consider the PROMISE more than we consider the PROBLEM.”
Why are these things SO important? These practices ensure that we DO NOT give up or lose heart. It helps us to persevere and to get through tough times. It helps us to be able to experience victory because of our perseverance. These practices strengthen our faith. They help us to make it to the other side. It allows us to hold on to HOPE and look forward to our VICTORY in Jesus! We are constantly reminded that “trouble WON’T last always!”
Just think, when we are in an actual SEVERE storm, we find the safest place in our home or wherever we may be at the time and we simply “hunker down.” We stay there until the winds and rain subside enough for us to come out and continue moving. The goal is to survive and to hold on to the hope that everything will be Ok in the end.
Remember, GOD is our SHELTER and our sure, firm, and strong FOUNDATION…Let us remain in HIM and trust in HIM, as we navigate this uncertain thing called LIFE.
“You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your Word.” Psalm 119:114
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” Ps. 46:1
“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” Psalm 91:1