Focusing on Truth during testing times

Do you ever feel worthless? Defeated? Tired? Challenged? Disappointed? Unsure? Discouraged? Sad? Frustrated? Fearful?

Of course you do. You’re human. These emotions are common to everyone—even those that you think don’t ever feel down.

Part of the problem today is the virus and its consequences. In areas of the world, there’s unrest, as well. People are out of work, wondering if they’ll be working online, and figuring out their circumstances. Some parents are looking into homeschooling for the first time. I read today of hunger in an African country, linked to the coronavirus.

Many people are going through uncertainty and loss.

We all need encouragement in these times.

How can you get it?

It is important to focus on Truth. The Bible encourages us, and we can encourage ourselves in the Lord.

Here are some truths that will help you in these trying times. You might want to write them on post-its and paste them around the house or on note cards and carry them with you.

  • Is any thing too hard for the LORD? (Genesis 18:14a)
  • I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me dwell in safety (Psalm 4:8).
  • The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want (Psalm 23:1).
  • I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye (Psalm 32:8).
  • I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth (Psalm 34:1).
  • I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears (Psalm 34:4).
  • Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all (Psalm 34:19).
  • God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble (Psalm 46:1).
  • For this God is our God for ever and ever: he will be our guide even unto death (Psalm 48:14).
  • What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee (Psalm 56:3).
  • In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God (Psalm 62:7).
  • Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; yea, our God is merciful (Psalm 116:5).
  • How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee (Psalm 139:17-18).
  • The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee (Jeremiah 31:3).
  • God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord (1 Corinthians 1:9).
  • For he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee (Hebrews 13:5b).
  • Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you (1 Peter 5:7).

God is good. He loves, saves, and enables us to do His will. May He be your strength today.

If you need Jesus, you can read the gospel message, here. God bless you.

By the bootstraps

There’s an old saying, “pull oneself up by one’s bootstraps” from back when men wore long riding boots that had handy dandy loops at the top for pulling them on. The meaning of this saying is the impossibility of pulling oneself up by oneself.

That’s where I was this week: vainly pulling on spiritual bootstraps and still feeling miserable.

It didn’t help that it rained all week.

Life circumstances—including the locked-in one—haven’t been favorable, either.

I have been praying, tugging on my old bootstraps, and vainly trying to smile … while wanting to throw things, cry, yell, and … you get the picture.

Where does one go for renewal?

Sanity?

Getting back to happy?

Having joy in the middle of several serious trials at once?

Need I mention having a good testimony—shut in with the one who matters most, my husband?

All the “better yourself, be who you were meant to be, bloom where you’re planted, and suck it ups” don’t work. I can tell you. Bootstrap pulling is totally useless, too—unless you’re a boot.

“When life hands you lemons…”

You can’t make lemonade without sugar.

I didn’t have any sugar.

The only remedy in the world for a rotten attitude and loss of joy is: Truth. The more the better.

Only Truth seeping into one’s heart can change the heart’s thinking and feeling.

I wrote up to this point before a death in the family this week. It’s amazing what focusing on what I know about God is helping me to deal with my emotions and our great loss.

Let me share a few truths that have helped me over the last few days:

  • What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee. In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me (Psalm 56:3-4).
  • Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest (Joshua 1:9).
  • Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose (Romans 8:26-28).
  • For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure (Philippians 2:13).

Lord, help me focus more on You, and thank You for praying for me, being with me, and working in me. Help me to trust You completely when I am overwhelmed, afraid, sorrowing, and in pain. I want to trust You for those I love, as well. Thank You for your Living Word, that speaks to me exactly what I need to hear.

What Scriptures have helped you this past week? Feel free to share.