Our Refuge + Strength Part 1
Psalm 46:1 (KJV) God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
As I'm sitting here in my bedroom, surrounded by God's presence, I'm reminded of the things He's done in my life that have made the greatest impact...
Yes, I'm thankful for all the many answered prayers, the countless blessings and testimonies... He's ravished me in His presence, and He's been so good to me! I say that, not because my life has been void of trouble. In actuality, it's the trials that have brought profound depth to my relationship with Christ. I have experienced intense attacks of the enemy in my own strength, and it was devastating. I've also experienced the same types of attacks completely focused on Jesus, surrounded by His love and filled with His peace. As I leaned upon Him and depended completely upon His strength, I could rise above and watch as He fought the battle for me!
There were times that as the trial ended, I was almost disappointed. It's hard to explain...I was appreciative and blessed that the season was over... yet... the magnitude of His presence as I depended completely on Him for provision, healing, strength and peace, would not be as intense as I stepped out of the trial. The grace for that season was lifted.
Oh, the glorious blessing of completely depending upon Him for our survival in the most desperate situations! It takes us to a new level of understanding His goodness, His mercy and His love!
If you default to your emotions when hard times come, they will take you down a path of anxiety and despair. If Jesus is the path you choose to take, nothing will be wasted. You will not only grow in your faith and strength, but you'll get to know your Lord in a greater way!
Were it not for marital problems years ago, I would not have come to know Jesus as my Bride Groom, the lover of my soul and the one who fulfills me! If it weren't for betrayal by those I loved and cared for, I wouldn't have experienced the depths of His comfort and love! Were it not for pain and sickness, I wouldn't have known Him as my healer! If it weren't for loss of jobs and financial stress, I wouldn't have known Him as my provider! The harder the trial the greater the testimonies and the realization that He is everything to me!! We CAN do ALL things through Christ Jesus who strengthens us, and we can overcome ANY situation by depending on Him to fill every void!
He's a good God! Worship Him in the good times and in the bad! We are never alone, and His strong arms are always present for us to lean upon!! He makes us strong and courageous and there's nothing we can't overcome when He remains our focus and desire!!! He is our refuge and strength!!!
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NLT) Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
Psalms 34:1 (NLT) I will praise the LORD at all times. I will constantly speak his praises.
Exodus 14:14 (NLT) The LORD himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.
James 1:2-4 (NKJV) My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
Philippians 4:13 (KJV) I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.