Journey to Awareness Lent Day 19

NIV Jeremiah 30:7  How awful that day will be! None will be like it. It will be a time of trouble for Jacob, but he will be saved out of it.

NIV Jeremiah 30:10  “‘So do not fear, O Jacob my servant; do not be dismayed, O Israel,’ declares the LORD. ‘I will surely save you out of a distant place, your descendants from the land of their exile. Jacob will again have peace and security, and no one will make him afraid.

If you have never had to live with the pain of deep depression give thanks to God.  If you have never had to fear for your life give thanks to God.  If you have never had to face losing your job, enduring a divorce, or losing a child to death then give much thanks to God.

The above are real situations.  They are situation that are far more common than most people understand.  But then again, we are living in a time in which people are easily disconnected and most people wear emotional masks.  Having to face an “awful day”  is far easier than most of us realize.

I have known the pain of a long term, hopeless depression that brings about prayers for death.  Those were awful days.  I have had to face the potential loss of a job and having to deal with people who were determined to make my life as difficult as possible.  Those were awful days.

In times like that it is hard to hold on to hope.  Sometimes you cannot hope.  Yet, even in those times you can force yourself to read.  You can force yourself to sit quietly with God.  In those awful days, you can force yourself to say, “I believe, help my unbelief!”  God’s grace will come.  God’s promises will be realized.  Our God is a reconciling God who works within our troubles and difficulties to fashion a faith in which we can know perfect love and this love will cast out our fears.

During this Lent season I have been spending time in reflecting on the “awful days” not in an attempt to solicit pity or as an act of penitence but as a reason to rejoice in the life I have now.   The Lord never said the way would be easy.  In fact Jesus assured us we would face problems and trials.  What God did make clear is that it would all be worth it and even the “awful days” would be used to produce good.