Have you ever found yourself trying to make your way across the bedroom in the middle of the night with the lights off? You tend to walk very slowly and hesitantly, feeling walls and furniture as you go. You might trip over something or stub your toe and hurt yourself. On top of that, you might even feel a little frightened by the eeriness of the dark and silence. Who knows who or what could be lurking around?
We have all found ourselves in periods of life or in situations that feel completely dark and hopeless with no clear end in sight. Whether literal or metaphorical, the dark is disorienting and frightening. It is in the dark seasons of our lives that we tend to question who God is and what he is doing. But it is also in those very seasons—when we find ourselves “in the valley of the shadow of death”— that God promises to be with us and to help us see us through. He only asks that we trust him, take courage in Him, and keep stepping forward.
Jennifer Rothschild can relate to both the challenges of spiritual darkness and literal, physical darkness. At the age of fifteen, Jennifer lost her sight to a degenerative eye disease. It would have been very easy and understandable for her to despair, and there were likely many times when she was tempted to, but she never lost her hope in the Lord. While physical blindness has been a part of Jennifer’s story for most of her life now, it didn’t stop her from moving forward into the calling God placed on her life—finding courage each step of the way.
Perhaps the most difficult parts of the challenges we face are those that cannot be fixed or solved. The only thing we can change in response to such difficulties is our mindset. That may not sound like much, but as Jennifer’s life attests, there is incredible power in what we choose to think and believe.
If there is one thing I know for sure, there will absolutely be things in your life that you cannot change, whether it be a physical challenge, a past mistake, a significant loss, or a hardship you are enduring. But you do get to choose how you think about your life, and whether you will allow the things that have happened in your life to defeat you. Finding joy can seem impossible in those difficult moments, but for those of us who know Jesus, we can also know that joy is within our reach no matter what our circumstances.
Listen, I know life is filled with hard things. I know firsthand the crippling pain of losing someone you love or dealing with a limitation that you cannot change. I know we would all prefer that God turn the lights on right away rather than let us sit in the dark. But, there is so much richness that God wants to reveal to us which can only be found in the depths of darkness. His promise rings true every time, friend: “And I will give you treasures hidden in the darkness—secret riches. I will do this so you may know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, the one who calls you by name.” (Isaiah 45:3 NLT)
I don’t like the pain or uncertainty of the dark any more than you do, but what I’ve learned, and what I know to be true, is that through it all, God is there right beside me as I go through the hard stuff..
He’s besides you too.
And there is something beautiful that he is doing within you that can only be done in those places where it seems all hope is lost and there is no light to be found. It takes a lot of courage to accept God’s invitation to trust Him and to allow the tough stuff in our lives for our ultimate good. But God is faithful, and the decision to trust Him is one we will never regret.
Are you finding yourself in need of a little boost of brave right now? This episode is just for you. I hope it helps you face whatever darkness you find yourself in. Know that with Jesus, you really can do all things through HIS strength.
Highlights from Today’s Episode:
- Finding joy in the midst of challenges
- Accepting God’s invitation to take courage
- Learning the lessons grief has to teach us
Resources from today’s show
- Connect with Jennifer on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, or on her website.
- Looking for a boost of courage? Be sure to check out Jennifer’s Take Courage study which will be released on July 1, 2020.
- Want more of Jennifer’s wisdom? Listen to her 4:13 podcast.
- Click here to Download The Lord strengthened me printable from Jennifer
- Download my summer activities idea guide
- Listen to part 1, part 2, and part 3 of my episodes on legacy.
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- Joy is not natural. Optimism is not natural. It is supernatural.” -Jennifer Rothschild
- “We all have the spiritual wiring of Christ when we have the mind of Christ. And so there is always hope when there is Jesus.” -Jennifer Rothschild
- “God is strong within our weaknesses, but we want him to inhabit our strengths too. Otherwise, we depend too much on that strength, and then we don’t depend on the grace that can be carrying us.” -Jennifer Rothschild
- “Courage is to just move through life—through the grief, the hardship, and the challenges—to just keep going.” -Chrystal Evans Hurst
Other Stuff to Check Out
- Did you catch my last episode with Esther Fleece? Listen here.
- Need to encourage your soul? Try listening to the playlist I put together for my mom, Lady Lois’ Worship
- Interested in supporting the content I create and enjoying bonus content? Learn about joining my Inner Circle!
- My book, Be sure and also check out my other books She’s Still There, Show Up For Your Life, Kingdom Woman!
After you’ve listened to the podcast, I’d love to continue the conversation. Be sure and leave a comment!
- Grief can be such a great teacher. You might not have thought about it before, but looking back, what are some of the lessons God has taught you through losses and challenges you’ve faced?
- Have you ever found supernatural joy in the dark? If not, talk to someone you admire who has a strong, mature faith. You’ll be amazed at what God can do.
- Where are you in need of courage right now? Are you trying to push through on your own? How can you accept God’s invitation to take courage and find peace in him?
Connect with me…
How to Listen to The Podcast
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