Facing the challenges of life AGAIN…

This summer I had the opportunity to teach a group of men, about 15 strong, topics that we as men need to hear and yes, wrestle with.  My last subject for the summer study was “living and leaving a legacy.”  One seasoned man spoke up at the conclusion of our teaching time and said, “you would think the older you get the easier life would become.  But, that is just not the case.”  Even at the age of 44 years old, I am sensing exactly what he means.  In June, we began to face some health challenges in our family which continue through today and will into the near future.  Only God knows the outcome so we are trusting Him each step of the way; in July, my Dad’s wife had two non-evasive surgeries for cancer which were unsuccessful – only to turn around and perform a more evasive surgery some weeks later.  Today, she is walking through the process of chemotherapy, prayerfully on her way to a full recovery; in late August after Jillian continued to experience back pain, we learned her spine is twisted.  Today she is in physical therapy in hopes to correct the issue and to relieve the discomfort; in September we learned that Jody’s grandfather has colon cancer and has been scheduled for surgery in the days ahead; and today, once again, I stood next to the grave of another church friend, the second in three weeks, who was ushered into eternity.  I know better than to ask the question, will it ever end?  This world is full of sin and sickness, injustice and negative influences.  Just when you turn the corner and you think things will improve, the bottom seems to fall out again.

ImageJust recently, my wife and I flew out to California for a quick four day trip.  One night, we had a four hour pass to Disney Land.  We decided to close out our time in the park with riding Space Mountain.  I remember riding this coaster at the age of 13 years old, not in California, but in Florida.  If there is one thing I remember vividly about this ride it is – just when you least expect it, the coaster takes an unexpected nose dive for about 3 or 4 seconds.  It’s quick, and before you know it, your stomach rises to your esophagus and now you’re gasping for air.  Often this is the reality of life today.  When you least expect it, another obstacle stands in the midst of your well organized life and now you are trying to put your life back into some semblance of order.  Some days it is easy and other days it is more difficult.  Yet, even in the midst of some of the greatest challenges I/we will ever face, I remind myself constantly and continually of what Paul encourages us with in 2 Corinthians 4:16-17, “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.”     We need to remember that there is a greater reality which is to come for those who do not lose heart or give up, but for those who continually pursue a passionate relationship with Christ.   But, it does not stop with us – it continues by sharing this hope we have embraced with those who need the same hope which only comes through a relationship with Christ. Image

Music plays such an important role in our lives today.  Every day when I run, I find myself listening to compelling words through the genre of music.  A couple of years ago, Jeremy Camp wrote a song titled “Three Will Be A Day” which is based upon Revelation 21, Romans 18 and 2 Corinthians 4.  He writes about hope today, through Jesus Christ, but he also sings about the greatest hope which is to come.  If you often find yourself asking the question, “will this ever end,” or if you are struggling and stumbling through life again, read, meditate and embrace these wonderful words:

 I try to hold on to this world with everything I have
But I feel the weight of what it brings, and the hurt that tries to grab
The many trials that seem to never end, His word declares this truth
That we will enter in this rest with wonders anew

But I hold on to this hope and the promise that He brings
That there will be a place with no more suffering

I know the journey seems so long
You feel you’re walking on your own
But there has never been a step
Where you’ve walked out all alone

Troubled soul don’t lose your heart
Cause joy and peace he brings
And the beauty that’s in store
Outweighs the hurt of life’s sting

I can’t wait until that day where the very one
I’ve lived for always will wipe away the sorrow that I’ve faced
To touch the scars that rescued me from a life of shame and misery
O, this is why, this is why I sing

There will be a day with no more tears
No more pain, and no more fears
There will be a day when the burdens of this place
Will be no more, we’ll see Jesus face to face
But until that day, we’ll hold on to YOU ALWAYS.


About GrippedByHisGrace

Our home is Okemos, Michigan. Our life is the work and ministry of Jesus Christ. Our worship is of God alone. Our goal is to live a supernatural life.

Posted on September 27, 2012, in Family. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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