Nothing is impossible with God. Luke 1:37
Darkness comes. In the middle of it, the future looks blank. The temptation to quit is huge. Don’t. You are in good company…You will argue with yourself that there is no way forward. But with God, nothing is impossible. He has more ropes and ladders and tunnels out of pits than you can conceive. Wait. Pray without ceasing. Hope. John Piper
Mary didn’t waste a minute. She got up and traveled to a town in Judah in the hill country, straight to Zachariah’s house, and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby in her womb leaped. She was filled with the Holy Spirit, and sang out exuberantly,
You’re so blessed among women, and the babe in your womb, also blessed! And why am I so blessed that the mother of my Lord visits me? The moment the sound of your greeting entered my ears, The babe in my womb skipped like a lamb for sheer joy. Blessed woman, who believed what God said, believed every word would come true!
And Mary said, I’m bursting with God-news; I’m dancing the song of my Savior God. God took one good look at me, and look what happened— I’m the most fortunate woman on earth! What God has done for me will never be forgotten, the God whose very name is holy, set apart from all others. His mercy flows in wave after wave on those who are in awe before him. He bared his arm and showed his strength, scattered the bluffing braggarts. He knocked tyrants off their high horses, pulled victims out of the mud. The starving poor sat down to a banquet; the callous rich were left out in the cold. He embraced his chosen child, Israel; he remembered and piled on the mercies, piled them high. It’s exactly what he promised, beginning with Abraham and right up to now. Mary stayed with Elizabeth for three months and then went back to her own home. Luke 1:39-56 (The Message)
CONSIDER:Read in Luke the whole story of a childless couple—Elizabeth and Zechariah. They are past hoping that they will ever have a child. Then they learn that soon, miraculously, they will be parents because…as the angel of the Lord declares…Nothing is impossible with God. Gabriel greets Mary with the news that God has found her beautiful inside and out and that she is to be visited by the Holy Spirit and conceive a child. Imagine Mary’s surprise and awe! The angel tells her that God will fulfill his promise to redeem the world through her! It seems impossible that she is the most fortunate woman on earth! When the angel tells Mary that her once barren cousin Elizabeth is also with child, is indeed six months pregnant, Mary rushes to Elizabeth’s side to celebrate God’s goodness. Yes, Mary’s barren cousin is also with child because…Nothing is impossible with God. Parents of an adult child struggle with the complexities of relating to a twenty-something who is far from God. The child is caught up in all the trash of this world…numerous addictions…rather than the treasures God offers. For so many parents, loving a child who is lost is discouraging and incredibly frustrating. Yet they wait and hope, because…Nothing is impossible with God. Having lost a huge amount of weight and back on the track to health after a scary heart episode, a man experiences dizziness that causes him to miss work for days at a time. A visit to the doctor reveals that it is very probable that he has a brain tumor. There is no insurance. He and his wife are shaken to the core, but in their faith, they trust, because…Nothing is impossible with God. Life is the ultimate roller coaster ride. There are wonderful highs filled with joy when the world is an incredible place. At those times our spirit soars within us, like Elizabeth’s when she learned that she was expecting a child, unmatched by Mary’s emotions when she learns she will be the mother of the redeeming Savior! But against those times of light and laughter, we all experience dark times of anxiety, adversity, anger and downright terror. Every person on earth has experienced these emotions! We all have times when we feel out of control. Those are the times that cause us to question what we know about God…is He truly good? We use truths of scripture to battle times when those nasty weeds threaten to invade and destroy our joy. Don’t give in to those thoughts! God’s truth:
Keep a sharp eye out for weeds of bitter discontent. A thistle or two gone to seed can ruin a whole garden in no time. Watch out for the Esau syndrome: trading away God’s lifelong gift in order to satisfy a short-term appetite. You well know how Esau later regretted that impulsive act and wanted God’s blessing—but by then it was too late, tears or no tears. Hebrews 12:14-17 (The Message)So when our negative emotions attempt to sabotage what the heart and mind know to be true about God—He IS good—pray hard and ask God to use the backhoe on those weeds. He is faithful and He will renew your strength. Truth: The warp and the weave making up the tapestry that is life…dark and light together…reveal a greater kind of beauty…and it is beyond our human understanding! God asks us to embrace this truth in faith and it is so hard to do! How can we step back from our magnifying glass view of life and try to see it all from God’s perspective? Truth: We are a part of an amazing and mystifying story…His story. By faith, we know He has the future in his hands. Isaiah 55:8-9 states, “I don’t think the way you think. The way you work isn’t the way I work.” God’s Decree. “For as the sky soars high above the earth, so the way I work surpasses the way you work, and the way I think is beyond the way you think.” We are transformed as we refuse to conform to damaging emotions and thought patterns. Here are three truths to focus on when the travails of life hit below the belt, take your breath away, and drip, drip, drip discouragement on your soul. Whisper them as a prayer… 1 – My God is great. We do not have to be in control because He is great (Romans 8:26-39). We can relax and rest in this truth and know without a doubt that He does care for us. Resting in God’s care is comforting because no matter how out of control we feel that these feelings do not need to be our reality. Feelings are not facts. God’s truth found in his His word must be our reality…the firm foundation on which we stand! Psalm 18:2 The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. (You can read more here: The 4Gs) 2 – My God is gracious. It was God who sent His son to death on a cross so that we could live to enjoy everlasting life. God created us in His image. He created us for fellowship with Him. Since the day that Adam and Eve made the wrong choice by listening to Satan’s lies, God has sought to restore and redeem our relationship with Him. God made the ultimate sacrifice by sending Jesus to the Cross so that we could live a life that glorifies Him and then go on to heaven where we will enjoy fellowship with God forever. John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 3 – This is not my home. In this world, we will have troubles, but our faith tells us to take heart again and again because these troubles are only in this present world and this world is not our eternal home. Because of Jesus’ death on the cross, we are not going to experience death and we will not be separated from God forever. Let’s remember daily that this broken-beyond-comprehension place we live in is only temporary. Heaven is our true home. But there’s far more to life for us. We’re citizens of high heaven! We’re waiting the arrival of the Savior, the Master, Jesus Christ, who will transform our earthly bodies into glorious bodies like his own. He’ll make us beautiful and whole with the same powerful skill by which he is putting everything as it should be, under and around him. Philippians 3:20-21 The Message (MSG) Praise God that we have the Bible so that we can read of Elizabeth, Mary, and countless others who were amazed by the things that God did in their lives. Their examples restore my hope! Embrace this fact of faith: Nothing is impossible with God. There is a rainbow in the sky. God will do a new thing and we are promised that the darkness will never be allowed to overwhelm the light.
Hope is a golden cord connecting you to heaven. This cord helps you hold your head up high, even when multiple trials are buffeting you…Hope lifts your perspective from your weary feet to the glorious view you can see from the high road. You are reminded that the road we’re traveling together is ultimately a highway to heaven. From “Jesus Calling” by Sarah YoungHope in Christ is truth. His promises are real. We can choose to cleanse our hearts every day through confession, prayer, and reading of His truth. Our hope is renewed and restored by the promises in the Good News of the Gospel. Rest-assured: God IS good! Trust that He will reveal the ropes and ladders of rescue that only He, in His incredible wisdom and all-powerful creativity, can use to save us from the craziest of circumstances. Wait prayerfully. Wait in faith. Trust that He is orchestrating everything for your good. Mary’s words truly resonate with me:
What God has done for me will never be forgotten, the God whose very name is holy, set apart from all others. His mercy flows in wave after wave on those who are in awe before him.
PRAY:Abba Father, when my heart is heavy and my world looks bleak, help me remember that You are The Rock on which I stand. You are mine and I am yours and nothing that happens in this life can change that fundamental truth. Thank you for sending your one and only son to die for the sins of all. May all glory and honor and praise be to You forever and ever. Amen.
MORE:I love this little book by Sarah Young and use it daily in my personal devotions. The book isn’t new, but it may be new to you. Check it out: Jesus Calling If you are situationally depressed, that is Satan getting you right where he wants you. Refute that nonsense! Worship and praise is one sure-fire remedy for situational depression. Worship and praise will lift you out of yourself and remind you that God is greater than your troubles. Start with this wonderful song: In Christ Alone. Then here is one more from Lauren Daigle…God’s truth: You Say Lean into Jesus.
Today’s post was written by Cindy Koopmans.