25 January 2015

GETTING THROUGH TIMES OF TRIAL - By Bonnie Roof


On one of his CD's, Christian vocalist Clint Brown tells of reserving a certain private Lear Jet plane and receiving a different one when he arrived at the airport. Since he believed in getting what he had paid for and the plane he reserved went 15 miles faster than the one he was given - he was upset and frustrated. Later that day, he heard a news report of a private plane, having left the same airport as he -  and of the kind he had originally reserved - crashing and killing all 6 people onboard, one a well-known sports figure. Upon investigation, he verified that the plane involved was, indeed, the very plane he had originally reserved. This is an example of a seemingly minor situation which God used to protect the life of one of His followers. We never know how many small, frustrating, time consuming happenings of inconvenience in our daily lives are actually God interceding for our protection and well-being - because of His goodness and love for us, His followers.

But - have you ever gone through trial after trial and wondered if God was even hearing your prayers and cries for help??

This week I found myself reflecting on the whirlwind of sickness and death that has surrounded me since the first week of December. I came down with a bad case of the flu which left me unable to do anything for 3 weeks and giving me no time to leisurely prepare for Christmas in the way I had planned. 

In the less than 30 days since Christmas: (1) a cousin thought to be in good health, died instantly, (2) another cousin found his wife dead (a nurse, younger than I, also thought to be in good health), (3) a friend, who had accompanied me to most of my doctor appointments and tests last year during my cancer diagnosis and surgery, was diagnosed with her 2nd cancer and had part of her lung removed; after being told the surgeon had removed all of the cancer - she was told 2 weeks later (last Thurs.) that yet another tumor of a totally different kind has been found on x-rays and doctors are to keep an eye on it for 3 months, to see if it continues to grow, (4) a church friend I have known since childhood went to be checked for memory issues (and seemingly, no other issues) this past Tues., was admitted to the hospital and 48 hours later - hospice was called in; testing revealed that her breast cancer of 15 years ago (which involved a double mastectomy) had returned with a vengeance and spread throughout her body, (5) 2 other members of my church passed away, one - instantly and also thought to be in good health, (6) another friend of 35 years was diagnosed with possible lung cancer and is facing serious surgery for partial lung removal - complicated by other serious health issues. Added to the sadness of these issues are the responsibilities of helping care for my mother (who is in the early stages of Alzheimer's - no longer able to monitor her meds, doctor appointments or numerous other things of importance, my brother and I are currently attending Alzheimer's seminars to obtain necessary info on her illness), my father who was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer over a year ago, my aunt who is house-bound from a stroke and hip replacement in 2013 (and for whom I serve as P.O.A.) - as well as mobility and other health issues of my own and the continuous health issues of each of my sweet "sisters" on the OWG team. How much more (?) was the thought in my mind. 



I was reminded that none of us are not only - not guaranteed tomorrow -  but not even our next breath. We are here through the goodness and love of our God - to fulfill that purpose which He predestined for each of us. It is up to us to determine and meet that purpose through a continually deepening relationship with Him and make the most of the time He has given us - reaching out to help, show love and witness to as many others as possible, taking time to enjoy relationships with family and friends, appreciate the many blessings He bestows on each of us every day (even during those times of trial), and give thanks and praise to Him.

Jesus experienced trials also - the cross was no small thing, like us - He questioned and even asked God if that trial was necessary. When we're hurting, probably one of the hardest things for us to remember is that God is going to work it out for our good - even when our trials are caused by our own foolish mistakes or someone else brings pain and hurt into our lives, we can trust God to work it out. If God loves us enough to provide for and protect us during the lesser times/things of importance in our lives, will He not also protect and provide during those serious heart-breaking times?? If we love God and truly want His will for our life, we can trust Him to bring good from it - no matter what happens to us, just as He promised. Daily, we need to believe that when we go through trials, God will work it out - again and again. It's comforting to believe that things will work out OK and it's only through the trials that we grow because we go to a deeper relationship with Him - it's our only choice if we want to make it through. We have to endure the trial and outlast satan by remaining steadfast, not giving up and focusing on the victory at the end instead of the trial.


"Looking away (from all that will distract) to Jesus, Who is the Leader AND the Source of our faith (giving the first incentive for our belief) and is also it's Finisher (bringing it to maturity and perfection). He, for the joy (of obtaining the prize) that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising AND ignoring the shame, and is now seated at the right hand of the throne of God". Hebrews 12:2 (Amplified).

Have you found comfort in your trials through your belief that He would work them out to your good??

GIVEAWAY: Please comment for the opportunity to win the Overcoming With God giveaway for the week.!! 
                

26 comments:

  1. BONNIE GOD had certainly anointed you to give encouragement! Thank you so much for these beautiful and timely words. Carlton and I can understand the feelings of being overwhelmed with what seems one trial after another, but I am so grateful for our Heavenly Father and His Word we can turn to for comfort and for the amazing friends He has placed in our lives.

    While I was reading your post and replying the scripture from John 16:33 came to mind "These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." Praise the LORD there is NOTHING we have endured or are going to go through that HE hasn't already seen and taken care of. As a dear friend spoke over me and Carlton a few weeks ago...."There is No place we have to walk that The Holy Spirit hasn't walked there. We should NEVER, EVER forget....GOD'S GOT THIS!!! ((HUGS))

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    1. Amen, Teresa!! Yes - peace is only found through Him, I'm so blessed that through the sadness and trials - I've found peace in Him. Knowing that He has experienced those feelings and trials also and is working everything to my good. Thank you for your sweet comments!! Hugs back - praying for you and your family!!

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  2. BONNIE, what wise and inspirational words! When we go through something that seemingly will not end, it is so easy to take our eyes off of the promises of God and on to our circumstances. This old flesh just gets so sick and tired of being sick and tired! Once I get my eyes back on what the WORD has to say about my situation I find comfort. Bless you, BONNIE, for your timely words of truth and beauty.

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    1. Thank you, Diana!! Yes, I've found it takes constant renewing my relationship with God - through prayer, His word, Christian music and books, and contact with godly friends, such as yourself, to maintain peace, joy and that closeness to Him I need and desire in my daily life. Blessings to you, as well - dear Diana!!

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  3. Thank you for your encouraging words.. My mother-in-law was recently diagnosed with breast cancer and now she needs prayer warriors.. She's always been our go to for encouragement & prayers.. I pray your words here will give me strength to be an encourager to her.. God Bless ! !

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    1. There is added strength in numbers, Deanna - I'm joining you in prayer for your mother-in-law right now. The prayers of my numerous online sisters-in-Christ (several of whom have already commented on this post) were a blessing beyond measure during my breast cancer testing, diagnosis and mastectomy this past May. I was amazed at how well I made it through it all and the peace I felt - I truly felt their prayers and His presence. He will give you the strength - just ask Him, believe and know that He will do it!! Thank you for your kind words!!

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  4. BONNIE, thank you so much for your encouragement. It's easy to feel like as if you are the ONLY one in a trial. I am holding on to His Word.

    Blessings

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    1. Caryl, I'm blessed that this post encouraged you!! He and His Word are truly the only answer to everything. Thank you for stopping by, blessings to you - as well!!

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  5. Bonnie, my jaw dropped reading about all the people close to you who are sick and who have died. My heart aches... physically aches right now for everyone involved. But you are so right, this life is but a puff of air, a breeze, grass in the field. It's so easy to forget that as we go about our business. Thank you for the encouraging message. Truly God is our only Hope in this world and in the next, and Jesus never said it would be easy here. He just say to cling to Him and we'd make it.!! I've been doing a lot of clinging lately. ;-) Praying for you, dear sister....

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    1. I so appreciate your prayers, MaryLu, and keep you and your family in my prayers, also. You've been heavily on my mind the last few days and am praying you're becoming strong enough to kick that flu to the curb. I really appreciate your comments, not only here - but on your own beautiful blog posts every Monday!! There would be no hope, but for Him, and yes - the prize at the end is more than worth all the trials!! Thank you so much for your comments!!

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  6. Oh Bonnie, you have had to face so much and in this life, we never know what lies ahead. Through it all, our Heavenly Father is with us and will hold us up...this is how we have the strength to continue to put one foot in front of the other. I am thinking of you.

    mauback55 at gmail dot com

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    1. Second by second - life changes drastically and adversely for many people, doesn't it Melanie?? Never knowing what will happen in ours, from one second to the next, is the reason we need to be ever armed with His Word, prayer and a close relationship with Him - cementing our faith that He is in control and works all to our good. Thank you for your thoughts and for your comments!!

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  7. Fantastic, Bonnie....you are such an inspiration, and I am so glad you joined OWG. I have been doing lots of clinging lately, too.....health issues of myself and dh. Thanks for your encouragement!

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    1. Oh, Jackie, you're so welcome!! You don't know how much you encourage ME by letting me know that I am an encouragement to YOU - just one of the many reasons God gave us sisters-in-Christ. And a blessing in the confirmation that I am being led by Him!! I'm saying a prayer for the health issues of you and your family.

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  8. Bonnie, the things you've endured, and yet your stronger because of it. Thanks for this post. I too have learned through our trials we come out stronger. Only He can calm the storms life brings us, but only if we let Him. That's why it is so important to hold tightly to Jesus.

    We've had issues with our health-especially my health, a daughter who doesn't want anything to do with me, family issues, financial issues, marriage issues...only by relying on Him were we able to carry on. He brought us through each and every time. For where we are weak He is strong.

    I believe this is a year of change and reconciliation. I believe our family will be restored, our youngest daughter will be getting married, we will be growing in our relationship with Jesus. I'm ready for some changes!

    Blessings to you, Bonnie!

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    1. You're welcome, Regina!! Yes, my faith has continued to grow through each trial - just as yours has. I've been praying for your health and will pray for that change, reconciliation and growth for you and your family, as well. Blessings to you and yours - thanks for your wonderful comments!!

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  9. Bonnie, when I posted this for you I read through it. And I am so sorry satan is causing so much trouble. We have to keep on keeping on believing and trusting. A couple of years ago I shared a time of trial my family went through while we were living in another state (published in God's Provision in Tough Times.) Since then I went through a trial where I was sure I was going home to Jesus and during that ordeal with Rituxan and post-Rituxan, I learned that I had to not only cast all my cares onto Jesus but I had to trust Him even unto death--even if He were to take me home. And it, life, is all about HIM--anything I do I pray I do to His glory because this world is not my home.

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    1. Carrie, I have "God's Provision in Tough Times" and was inspired by your testimony, just as I am continually inspired by you - yourself. I know that in addition to the trials you mentioned in your comments, you deal with chronic illness on a daily basis and yet, you are one of the hardest working people I know and accomplish more than most do - while always serving Him and giving to others. I'm so blessed to call you my friend and sister-in-Christ and know that I will share "Home" with you one day!!

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  10. Bonnie, I'm so sorry about all these losses and distresses - truly life is a gift! I was just thinking some of these same thoughts as a church friend is dying of a brain tumor. Many others in our congregation are facing health issues and other stressors as well as your OWG sisters here. Prayers with you all. One thing that helps me let go of my friend is knowing her REAL journey is just beginning and she'll soon be home with HIM unless he heals her. But as my mother reminds me, heaven is the ultimate healing. Thank you for your wisdom and heart for the Lord. It's no accident you are here at this time - a divine instance once again!

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    1. Oh, Laura - truer words never spoken!! A gift, indeed, that pales in comparison with the gift of the 2nd (eternal) life. It's certainly true that knowing one's final destination lessens the pain of departure. I'm one of those people that wants no sad songs and comments at my funeral, instead: songs of joy, laughing, dancing in the aisles, balloons, and a celebration party for my journey "Home"!! Thank you so much for that reminder!! As your mother says, heaven is the ultimate healing - not only for health issues, but for other trials, as well. I agree with you - no accidents where God is concerned!! Thank you for your sweet comments!!

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  11. Bonnie, I am truly sorry for all of the trials that you and your loved ones are facing. Your words are encouraging though. I have also found that being mindful of Jesus suffering trials has given me some comfort in the midst of mine. I will pray for you and yours.

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    1. Loraine, thank you so much for your prayers and your kind words!! And - I'm, indeed, thankful to know that I've encouraged you. Even though so painful to us, our greatest trials will always pale in comparison to His. So glad you stopped by!!

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  12. Oh gosh Bonnie, I'm just astounded as to the amount of grief and trials that have surrounded you these past few months. And more than ever, I'm inspired by your thankful and gracious spirit through it all!! I reckon your love and faith for the Lord have made the devil pretty mad! As for finding comfort in your trials knowing that God will work them out for good, I am getting much better at that. I think the more we can look back and see His hand in things the more our faith grows. Sometimes our trials are only that we learn patience or humility or that we can help others... but whatever the reason, He is right there with us as He has promised. Praying for you and your loved ones dear Bonnie!!

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    1. Oh, yes - I'm sure the devil is very mad at me, Noela, lol. He's been on my back for quite a while now - guess he hasn't read the "Book" ending and found out that he lost, lol!! What you say is so true - our faith grows with each trial He solves, hence - another reason we have to endure them. I agree that patience, humility and love for others are some of the other lessons learned through our trials. Thank you for your prayers and sweet comments, Noela - you are an inspiration to me, as well, my friend!!

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  13. Dear, sweet Bonnie --

    Oh my goodness!!!! Like MaryLu, my jaw hit the floor over all the things you've gone through in the last 30 days and are STILL going through at this time. I knew about many of them, but certainly not all, and once again -- like Noela -- I am in utter amazement over your incredible attitude and "gracious spirit," and truly humbled and inspired by the person you are.

    I've said it before many times and I'll say it again: I am in awe of all you do for others -- your endless encouragement, ongoing assistance, and relentless prayer in the midst of your own trials and heartaches. But then the bottom line here is you couldn't do it without His grace, which then amazes me all the more. Because in our weakness, He is strong, which means, my sweet friend, you are one strong lady and powerhouse for the Lord!!

    Beautiful post, as always, Bonnie, and I'm grateful to Carrie for bringing you aboard.

    Hugs and more hugs,
    Julie

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    1. Oh, Julie - I pray to not only always be the godly person, encouragement, and servant of God, you feel I am - but to continually improve in all areas, through His love and guidance. God knows that no one on earth has been a greater inspiration to me than you!! You are so right in that it is His grace that gives me strength, and creates any good works - through me - for His glory. I am nothing without Him. And - I am the one that is humbled by YOUR love, prayers, inspiration and friendship - my friend!!

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