#thestruggleisreal

It’s all about perspective. Is the glass of milk half empty or half full? Is the word of the cross folly or power (1 Corinthians 1:18)? If we say it is the power of God, then we have to walk confidently in that. We can’t be wishy-washy. This isn’t a belief that can be adapted. It’s one that must be adopted. You either accept the Word as Truth or you don’t. There’s no in between.

If then, we believe the Word of God to be true, we must believe every word, every syllable is true; we must believe that it is applicable and relevant to every situation, in every decade, for every generation. We have no authority to say otherwise.

Perspective. It is the “why” behind every belief we hold.

Here are some questions to think on: What are you struggling with today? What has been eating away at your heart, your peace, your joy? What is crushing you, overwhelming you, attacking you? Maybe you’re struggling to pay the bills. Or maybe school/work is kicking your butt. Maybe you’re unappreciated. Or maybe you’re having relationship issues with your family/friends/significant other. Perhaps your dealing with health issues or caring for someone with medical problems. Now, how do you view these things? Do you see them as unconquerable giants? Are these the monsters in your life?

This might come off insensitive and harsh, but I’m going to say it anyways: Such is life. Life is made up of struggles and sorrows and heartbreak and strife. Cancer is part of life. Broken friendships are part of life. Financial problems are part of life. This probably sounds really bitter and cynical… I assure you, that’s not my intention. My point is this: Life is rough. It’s not always rainbows and butterflies. In fact, it rarely is. But life is temporary y’all. It’s a fleeting moment. It’s a single breathe…

Inhale.
Exhale.

And it’s gone. It’s over. Just like that.

Yeah, okay, #thestruggleisreal. But being weighed down and paralyzed by our struggles (which is just a part of life)? Yeah, #aintnobodygottimeforthat.

The self-pity has to go.
The whining has to stop.

Get your cowboy boots back on and jump on that horse again.

Basically, stop wallowing.

We need to adjust our perspective. As I write this, I’m speaking more to myself than to any of you: I need to adjust my perspective.

Yeah, life is hard. So what? It’s TEMPORARY. Gosh, I wonder if the reality of that will ever truly hit me before I die. The total expanse of my life is not even visible on the timeline of eternity. And it never will be. Because that is how short our time here is.

This might be offensive to some of you but what if I said that all your struggles, all your sorrows, all the heartbreak you’ve ever experienced – these are just light and momentary troubles. Nothing worth spending weeks of your life moping around for. NBD. Well that’s actually what Paul says in 2 Corinthians 4:16-18.

So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

BAM. Punched in the face by the apostle Paul, yet again. If those words don’t give you perspective, I don’t know what will.

Trust me, I know what you’re thinking. I know because I’ve had the same reaction to these words. It’s probably something along the lines of, “Um. Excuse me? ‘Light and momentary?!?!’ My struggles, pain, and suffering are ‘light and momentary?’ You have no idea what I’ve been through. Don’t tell me my struggles are nothing.” 

But guys, the point of these verses isn’t to upset us or put us on the defensive. Paul didn’t write these words to incite the Corinthians, to belittle them, or to point a wagging finger in their faces. He wrote these words to encourage them, to remind them of their eternal inheritance. He wrote these words to give them perspective. 

In case 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 didn’t pack enough of a punch for you, here’s an extra dose of perspective:

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.

Romans 8:18

When we view our struggles as “bigger than life,” when we let the monsters of this world terrorize our hearts and steal our hope, we lose sight of our omnipotent God. We take on a diminished view of His power to work for us and His desire to do so. We don’t even realize we’re doing this half the time. How troubling that we would ever see Him as anything short of able and wiling?

Y’all, do you understand how great a God we serve? Honestly, I don’t think any of us truly do… He is our omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent Creator, King, Redeemer, and Friend. He breathed us into existence. He adopted us into His royal family. He set crowns on our heads and washed our dirty, orphaned feet with the tears He cried for us as He suffered on the Cross. Divine power and indescribable love met at the foot of the Cross.

The afflictions of this world are many. But they are light. They are momentary. They are nothing compared to what He suffered for us. And they aren’t even worth mentioning when we consider the “eternal weight of glory” that awaits us.

The suffering He experienced completely negates any suffering we endure in this world. And the hope we have for eternity is what encourages us to keep pressing on in Him.

If we believe the Word of God to be true, if we believe it is the power of God, then we must believe that no affliction in this world can ever overwhelm us. We are victors! Not only over death and the powers of hell, but we are victors over every struggle this life brings. Victory is ours in Him! Over death and hell and suffering!

So what does all of this mean for us? It means no more pity parties, no more whining, no more wallowing.

Suck.
It.
Up.

Adopt a new perspective. Dare to believe that your struggles don’t own you. You are victorious over them because of the One who lives in you. Set your eyes and your heart and your mind on the Lord. Place your heart in His hands – there is no safer place! He will steady you and equip you to handle every storm that comes your way. Trust that the One whom the wind and waves obey is strong enough to save you, protect you, strengthen you. Hope for eternity! Rejoice in your suffering! Remember that you are hidden in Him. And y’all, when God hides something, you better believe that it won’t be found unless He wills it so! You are hidden in Him, in the shelter of His wings. He is your dwelling place. Rest in Him. And while you’re resting in His eternal embrace, sing these words, believe these words:

When the ground beneath my feet gives way
And I hear the sound of crashing waves
All my world is washing out to sea
I’m hidden safe in the God who never moves
Holding fast to the promise of Your truth
That You are holding tighter still to me

The Rock won’t move and His word is strong
The Rock won’t move and His love can’t be undone
The Rock of our Salvation

My hope is in the promise of Your blood
My support within the raging flood
Even in the tempest, I can sing
I’m hidden safe in the God who never moves
Holding fast to the promise of Your truth
That You are holding tighter still to me

The Rock Won’t Move | Vertical Church Band

One thought on “#thestruggleisreal

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s