Jeremiah 29:11, "'For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord. 'They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.'"
Romans 8:28, "And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them."
Jeremiah 29:11 and Romans 8:28 are two verses that I am reminded of often in recent circumstances in my life.
Have you ever been at a place in your life where you quite honestly can't see how what is going on is something that God intends to bring you hope and a future from? Have you ever wondered, "How on earth is this ever going to work together for my good?"
If you answered, "Yes." to either of those questions, I can assure you, you aren't alone.
I too have had those thoughts pop into my mind. How can something so ugly... so broken... so painful... ever be used for good?
As I look at the above verses, I realize that they are true, even though I can't understand at the moment how they're going to prove true.
When I look in the Bible, I am reminded of all the stories that seemed exactly like mine- hopeless -where God decided to take the broken pieces and put them back together. You see, God isn't a God of destruction. God is a God of restoration. He doesn't want to take the messes in our lives and let them be the end of the story. He wants us to take the broken messes in our lives to Him so He can begin the restoration process.
What does this look like?
In the book of Ruth, Naomi had lost her husband, and then her two sons passed away. This left Naomi with two daughters-in-law. What looked like a hopeless situation really was only the beginning of the story. When all hope was lost, God stepped in and made a way. Ruth followed Naomi back to her hometown, and as we all know, God restored what was broken.
There are many other stories in the Bible that show the same thing.
Joseph was sold into slavery. He was accused of a crime he didn't commit, and he was thrown into prison where he was left for years. Life seemed pretty bleak to him, I'm sure, but God ended Joseph's story in a way where He used him to save people from dying of a famine.
Abraham and Sarah had absolutely no hope of having a baby, but when God got involved... He made a way.
God was about to destroy the earth because of the wickedness that was taking place, but He noticed Noah and saved him and his family from the flood.
Rahab, a prostitute, is now in the genealogy of Jesus because God stepped in and made her story count.
There are many more stories in the Bible that are just like the few I mentioned above. There were plenty of moments where those people could've looked at their circumstances and thought that there was no hope, no future, and no good thing to come from that, but when God stepped in, He made a way to turn hopelessness into hope once again. He changed ashes into beauty.
What are you going through today that feels like it's going to be the end of you? I'm going through feeling like my world is over. I feel like I have broken dreams, broken hopes, and a broken heart. If I stay focusing on that, I will end up feeling despaired, but if I lift my eyes up to Jesus and remember that He is still the same today in my pain as He was in my highest moments of joy, I find hope that the sun really will come out again.
What do you need to surrender to God and believe that He is more than able to do exceedingly more than we could ever ask or imagine? (see Ephesians 3:20).
God has a good plan for yours and my life! What He is requiring of us is to surrender to His ways. Psalm 37:4, one of my all time favorite Bible verses, says, "Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart's desires."
When we delight in the Lord, He will make our desires line up with His, and He will give us what we have been searching for all along... fulfillment.
You know very well that where I find myself today seems dark, sad, lonely, hopeless, and never-ending. Where I find myself today is in a place that I would have looked at as impossible at one point, but today I see it as the perfect place for a miracle. I am in the perfect spot for a miracle to take place in my life. Lord, I don't know how. I don't know when. What I do know is this: As I live my life for You, You will take care of me. I pray for a miracle to take place in my life. I am looking to You! You are the Only One Who can make this better. I surrender my ways, my plans, my hopes, my dreams, and my desires to you! Here I am, Father. I need a miracle!