Monday, February 1, 2010

We Do Not Lose Heart

Several of my work friends are losing their jobs of many years. Names are missing, cubes are cleared out, e-mails bounce back.

Others close to me are missing loved ones. The memory of their loss pierces their hearts each day. Will the pain ever go away?

Many in my church ask for prayers over serious health issues, overwhelming finances or complicated relationships. My prayer list is growing. There is suffering everywhere.

And then there is Haiti.

These poor souls have suffered their whole lives -- but we hear stories of these beautiful, victorious people who have not lost hope:
  • A man searched through wreckage and debris every day for his wife until he found her.
  • His wife, who survived a week under rubble, praised God and sang as she emerged into the light of day again.
  • A young man pinned under a fallen building for 14 days survived by rationing a jug of water and was rescued just hours after his supply ran out.
  • A doctor reported that hundreds of hungry, terrified, grieving, hurting people waited so patiently in long lines to be treated for life-threatening injuries -- without a single security incident.
  • A 66-year-old widow and a 12-year-old boy who had just lost their entire families decided to become a team -- a new family -- saying, "God will provide. In fact, He already has"...
I remember that suffering is not new; the Bible gives many examples. We can relate to what Paul wrote: "We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed." (2 Cor. 4:8-9, but read the chapter for the full encouragement...)

We must not forget that God is with us through it all. Just think, He is with all of His suffering children at once! He is sovereign. We do not understand, but we do know God is the One who can call light out of darkness.

"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." (2 Cor. 4:16-18 NIV)

Thank you, Lord, for role models with strong faith -- strengthened, no doubt, by suffering and walking along, trusting in You no matter what. Oh, give them strength!


  1. Your words encourage me in my grief, illness and now job loss. He is there. There is hope. He will lead. Patience during adversity is what's needed. Reaching out will dull the pain and help others. That's what I have to gain strength to do. Thank you for faithfulness to our Lord and sharing that faith. Cindy Kapla

  2. Thank you Marilyn, You strengthen me with God's Word. You have been a great inspiration and a roel model to me as far back as when we were driving up north together in the fog.
    My heart goes out to all who have lost jobs and are hurting financial in these hard times. You will be in my prayers.
    Marilyn you must write a book. Your words are like fresh rain that washes us in HOPE and strength. God Bless you and your family. Jean

  3. Inspirational speaker and author Beth Moore was referring to an earthquake experienced by Paul and Silas in Acts when she said, "God allowed all that COULD be shaken TO be shaken in order for all to see what CANNOT be shaken!"

    Thanks for your kind comments. I love the interaction!