To Those Who Feel Like Your Life Is Hopeless

Four years ago, I felt like this. My marriage was over. Ministry seemed impossible. I didn’t think I would ever find a job outside of a church, and I felt like no woman in her thirties and in her right mind would marry a man who is called to ministry. My perspective was all screwed up. I now have a wife who accepts and supports my calling, a ministry where God is changing lives, and a beautiful blended family.

This post was prompted by a set of verses that God reminded me of a few minutes ago. I will end with this passage and let God’s Word give you hope.

“We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed.”

‭‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭4:7-9‬ ‭NLT‬‬


“The Will of God”

This is a classic poem by an unknown writer. I cannot take credit for this, but I think it speaks of God’s will beautifully.

“The Will of God”

The will of God will never take you,

Where the grace of God cannot keep you.

Where the arms of God cannot support you,

Where the riches of God cannot supply your needs,

Where the power of God cannot endow you.
The will of God will never take you,

Where the spirit of God cannot work through you,

Where the wisdom of God cannot teach you,

Where the army of God cannot protect you,

Where the hands of God cannot mold you.
The will of God will never take you,

Where the love of God cannot enfold you,

Where the mercies of God cannot sustain you,

Where the peace of God cannot calm your fears,

Where the authority of God cannot overrule for you.
The will of God will never take you,

Where the comfort of God cannot dry your tears,

Where the Word of God cannot feed you,

Where the miracles of God cannot be done for you,

Where the omnipresence of God cannot find you.

My One Regret

I just read a post about Little Richard. He stated that the one thing, at age 84, he wishes he could go back and do was preach. Many people reach their senior years with regrets such as this. I heard a man give a testimony in a worship service years ago, saying he dropped out of Bible college and never fulfilled God’s call on his life. He was in his senior years and admonished those present to obey God or they would end up miserable like he did.

I want to make an appeal to those who read this. Don’t hit your final years with regrets. I’m not talking about going sky diving, Rocky Mountain climbing, and whatever else the song says. I’m talking about doing something to make your life count. Not all of us are preachers. We all can, however, make a worthwhile contribution to society and God’s kingdom work. 

Shake off the excuses, stop procrastinating, block out the critics, and do God’s will for your life. You’ll be glad you did. I can testify to it!

Going the Extra Mile

I had the privilege of visiting a lady today who supervised a cleaning crew at a major university. Many people would clean, supervise their employees, clock out for the day, repeat the same duties the next day, and view the students as the ones who make the messes she and others have to clean. Not this lady! She went the extra mile.

You may read this and wonder why she or any other supervisor would go above and beyond. Isn’t everything great as long as you get your job done? Why do anything extra? These college students are more than likely absorbed in their college drama with classes, relationships, etc. and don’t care about hearing a thing from “the cleaning lady”. Do you think that stopped this lady? NO! She would overhear them talking disrespectfully to their parents over the phone, so she would wait and address them for their disrespect. She didn’t have to do that. Many students would hate her for what they perceive as butting in to their business, but many of these students who received a word of correction from this lady stay in contact. She is retired now, but the impact she made in their lives still lives on because she went the extra mile and stepped in like a loving mother. 

Many of us are busy clocking in and out, collecting our checks, and missing the bigger picture. Meanwhile there are people around us who need some loving correction and direction. Will you and I be the ones who care enough to go the extra mile?

Learning from the Prayers of Others 

I know that we are not supposed to pray for the benefit of others, but the prayers of others can teach us so much. There are men and women of God throughout history who prayed some powerful prayers. 

I encourage you to begin with the prayers recorded in Scripture – prayers prayed by Jabez, Daniel, Nehemiah, Job, Paul, but most importantly Jesus. Study the prayer lives of others who are a little closer to our day like Charles Spurgeon, Oswald Chambers, and David Jeremiah. Their books have taught me so much on prayer. 

I want to close with this one I heard as a 15-year old in church. I’m not a fan of reading prayers publicly on a constant basis, but this and so many more can teach us how to pray the way God wants us to pray.

Asking God for More? Here are a few things to consider.

This morning, I preached on the prayer of Jabez from I Chronicles 4. For those of us who know it, our favorite part is “expand my territory”. I have prayed that many times in my life, and God has answered it in different ways. God did teach me a couple of things about territory expansion.

  • God will only give us what He can trust us with. Want more money? Are you responsible with the money you have now? Want a different job? Are you giving your best where you currently work? Why do you want more when you’re not faithful with what you have? Don’t live as if the grass is greener on the other side. Make the grass greener where you are.
  • Expect opposition. The opposition will come in various forms. The devil hates progress, especially if it is the advancement of God’s kingdom. Don’t be surprised when the devil tries to thwart God’s plan. It’s a pretty good indicator that you are headed in the right direction.

Before you ask God for more, assess yourself. Focus on personal improvement for the glory of God. Then God will expand your territory because He knows you are serious about doing it His way.

Meeting God in the “Why?”

Throughout my life, I have asked a series of whys. Today was one of those days. This morning, a tragedy that hit close to home has thrown my family for a loop. Death comes to us all, but not all of us experience it tragically. It seems so surreal. I know that those who were closer to this individual are asking more whys than I am, and I am praying that they find God in the whys.

As you read throughout Scripture, you will see many men and women of God asking that question. Don’t let some self-righteous person guilt-trip you for asking God “Why?” He delights in giving you His perspective. It is in these times that we seek Him more. 

In 2012-2013, I asked God this question often. Why am I experiencing anxiety? Why is my family falling apart? Why didn’t you let me have a hip condition instead of my son? Why is ministry as I know it about to be over? Through all this, I found God in the whys.

Maybe you are asking God “Why?” today. If you seek Him, you will find Him. May this song encourage you.

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