How to Trust God with My Biggest Battles

by Kristine Brown @kristinebrown43

What do you do in that moment when you realize a battle is eminent? Your enemy has waged war against you, and the news punches you right in the stomach. Do you feel fear? Shock? Uncertainty of where to go, or what to do next?

For me, when a report of bad news comes, and I realize an attack is on its way, I immediately switch to defense mode. I pray, ask God for help, and even boldly claim my trust in God with my words. But sometimes my actions tell a different story. I try to convince myself that my situation is just a bad dream and waking up will make everything OK. And in a desperate effort to wake up from that dream, I start fighting the battle in my own strength.

We’ve all been there, on the front lines of impending battle. In that frightening place, it’s easy to see the magnitude of what we are facing and forget one important detail. There’s a huge difference between the way we see the battle and how God sees it.

King Jehoshaphat knew this. When Jehoram, King of Israel, asked Jehoshaphat, King of Judah, to join him and go to battle against Moab, Jehoshaphat agreed. The king of Edom also joined with them. But after marching seven days with no water for their men or animals, Jehoram lost faith.

“Then the king of Israel said, ‘Alas! The Lord has called these three kings to give them into the hand of Moab.’” 2 Kings 3:10 ESV

But Jehoshaphat wasn’t ready to give up so easily. He called for a prophet, so they could see what God had to say about it. God’s words to these three kings revealed a powerful truth that still applies to our battles today.

“And this is a simple matter in the sight of the Lord; He will also deliver the Moabites into your hand.” 2 Kings 3:18 NKJV

What we see as our most difficult struggles are the simplest matters to God.

God spoke through the prophet Elisha, telling them He planned to fill every dry stream bed with water, so they would have plenty to drink. That was His first promise. Then He also added another minor detail. God would do one more thing; He would deliver the enemy into their hands. Amazing.

You see, God had a plan all along. King Jehoram couldn’t see it. All he could see was three armies of exhausted, worn out, thirsty men without water to drink. How would they ever be able to fight?

I hear you, Jehoram. I’ve been in that place of doubt. We all have. We look around at our circumstances, and our human minds can’t possibly foresee a good outcome. We’re exhausted, worn out, and thirsty. Yet it’s in those moments God calls us into a deeper level of trust.

“And when they rose early the next morning and the sun shone on the water, the Moabites saw the water opposite them as red as blood.” (2 Kings 3:22)

The enemy thought the kings had turned on each other, so they went after the spoil. But when they came to the camp, the Israelites rose up and took them down. God used the water to confuse the Moabites and win the victory even before the battle began.

Just like Jehoshaphat, when we trust God with our biggest struggles, He will bring us to a place of victory in the most remarkable ways.

Are you facing a battle that seems insurmountable? Are you ambushed by feelings of fear, shock, or uncertainty? Instead of taking matters into our own hands, let’s take our trust to a new level today. Our biggest battles are God’s simplest matters.

Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh; is anything too difficult for Me?                                                                                                                                                   Jeremiah 32:27 NASB

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How to Trust God with My Biggest Battles – insight from @KristineBrown43 on @AriseDailyDevo (Click to Tweet)

kristine brownAbout the author: Kristine Brown is a communicator at heart, sharing insight with her readers in relatable  ways. Her life experiences serve as a backdrop for her lessons that highlight God’s powerful Word and redemptive grace. She is the founder of the non-profit organization, More Than Yourself, Inc. Read Kristine’s weekly devotions at kristinebrown.net or connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.

Do you ever question whether you measure up? Kristine’s book, Over It. Conquering Comparison to Live Out God’s Plan,  learn the solution to a battle all women face. Through practical Bible teaching, find contentment in your God-given uniqueness and take simple steps to claim victory over comparison. Learn how to say “I’m over it” and mean it!

Join the conversation: What have you entrusted to God lately?

 

Believing God for More

by Cindi McMenamin @CindiMcMenamin

Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh; is anything too difficult for Me?                                                                                                                                                         Jeremiah 32:27 NASB

I am waiting upon God to come through for me in a particular way. But when I tell others of the hope I have, I often hear the words “at least.”

“At least you have a roof over your heads.”

“At least the two of you have jobs.”

“At least you’re healthy.”

“You might as well at least ask.”

Oh, the sting of well-intentioned remarks. And, oh the sting of those two guilt-ridden words: At least….

As I’ve ministered to women over the past 30 years, I have seen so many settle for “at least” in their lives.  And yet, I believe that if God went to such great extremes to show His love for you and me by having His only Son die on the cross for us, then He did not intend for us to be content with “at least.”

Yes, God’s Word says we are to be thankful in all circumstances. (1 Thessalonians 5:18)  It also tells us godliness with contentment is great gain. (1 Timothy 6:6) But God doesn’t want our gratitude and contentment to be a form of resignation (“I guess I should be happy with this, since it’s all I will ever get anyway”). Rather, God wants His children to be full of anticipation for the “more” that He is so capable of giving – to the point that we thank Him ahead of time for all that He is about to do. This God who tells us to be thankful in all things actually raises the bar when we decide to settle for less or at least what life brings us.

In Ephesians 3:20, we are told that God “is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us” (NIV). You and I often hear or think or say the words “at least” when it comes to our lives. And yet God’s Word says “Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete” (John 16:24 NIV) and “without faith it is impossible to please God” (Hebrews 11:6 NIV).

Perhaps God would like us to ask for a little more of the impossible.

I don’t want to be reluctant to pour out my heart to God. I don’t want to doubt He can or will do this for me. Instead, I want to honor Him by remembering He can do anything.

Lord, help me to be content in all things, and surrender to Your best for me, but don’t let me settle for less when You are the God who is capable of going above and beyond all I can think and ask for.

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Believing God for More than “At Least” – wisdom from @CindiMcMenamin on @AriseDailyDevo (Click to Tweet)

View More: http://chelseamariephoto.pass.us/cindiAbout the author: Cindi McMenamin is an award-winning writer and national speaker who helps women strengthen their relationship with God and others. She is the author of 16 books including When Women Walk Alone (more than 130,000 copies sold), God’s Whispers to a Woman’s Heart, and When God Sees Your Tears. For more on her books and ministry, or to learn more about her coaching and consulting services for writers, see her website: www.StrengthForTheSoul.com.

Cindi’s book, When God Sees Your Tears, addresses our struggle during heartache: “Where is God when you need Him most? Doesn’t He care?”

Yes, you are precious to God. He knows the longings of your heart even more than you do. Place your trust in Him and rest…as you await the unfolding of His plan for your life.

Join the Conversation: When has God done the impossible for you?

Rolling Your Stones Away

by Janet McHenry

Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb and they asked each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?” But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away.  Mark 16:2-4

On what we now call Good Friday, Jesus suffered on a cross and died. Scripture says two Jewish council members, Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, took Jesus’ body down from the cross, wrapped it in linen, and placed it in a tomb cut out of rock. Then a stone was rolled against the entrance.

The finality of closing that tomb doubt signaled the end of His life on earth for them. The disciples, Jesus’ family, and those involved in His crucifixion assumed what anyone would: the past three years of His powerful ministry were over.

One earthly tasked remained, however. When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary—the mother of James—and Salome headed to the tomb to anoint Jesus’ body with spices. However, as they walked, a thought occurred to them. Who would roll the stone away?

That was a good question! Scholars have speculated the stone could have been either a wheel-shaped stone or a giant plug. In either case it would have been two to four thousand pounds in weight. No doubt others, maybe the guards assigned to the tomb, had helped Joseph and Nicodemus move it over the entrance on Friday night. Moving the stone would take more than the combined strength of a few women.

However, when they arrived, they saw it had already been rolled away. Jesus had resurrected from the dead. The power of heaven had come to earth and moved the stone. And Jesus had walked away.

Good Friday can be called good, because the rolled-into-place stone was not the final word. Jesus did the impossible that day. And today He is still in the business of rolling away our seemingly impossible stones.

Many women are in vulnerable positions. Maybe you’re single and pregnant. Maybe you’ve been trying to conceive. Maybe you’re a widow . . . or maybe your husband has been unfaithful. Maybe you’re just wondering how you’ll pay your next bill.

Years ago when working in a law office, I thought I’d type up my own divorce papers—just to see how they would look. I actually worked for my husband, who was often demanding and angry. I felt desperate. I could not live one more day in a hopeless marriage. After I typed up the petition, I looked at it and prayed, Lord, give me one good reason to stay in this marriage.

At that moment, Craig walked into the room holding our young son. It was like a snapshot—one that could have been put into a photo album. I began to think of the future graduations and weddings and grandbabies-to-be. What would those photos look like if we were no longer together?

I thought of the sense of hopelessness that Jesus’ followers must have felt on that Good Friday. They didn’t know Resurrection Sunday was just two dawns away. In spite of how hopeless things seemed in our home, maybe God could resurrect our relationship. So I prayed that Jesus would roll the stones in our marriage away.

And he did! We went to a marriage seminar a weekend soon after that and began to learn how to communicate our needs clearly. We even slipped away from one of the seminars to spend time walking the beach, holding hands, and telling each other what qualities we appreciated in each other.

Is our marriage perfect? Not by any means. But it does stand as a testimony to what Jesus can do for any relationship. We truly love each other more each passing day and have learned that there is always hope when you have faith in Christ.

Ask Him to roll away your stones, to make what now seems impossible possible. As God said in Jeremiah 32:27: “Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh; is anything too difficult for Me?”

“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.” Hebrews 10:23

Janet McHenryAbout the author: Janet McHenry is a national speaker and author of 23 books, including the best-selling PrayerWalk and The Complete Guide to the Prayers of Jesus, which will be released June 2018. A former educator, she writes from her home in the Sierra Valley, where she and her rancher husband Craig have raised four children. Janet still walks and prays for her town. She may be contacted through her website, www.janetmchenry.com.

Free Book Contest!  Arise Daily will use a random number generator to pick a Prayer Walkwinner from today’s comments. To enter our contest for Janet’s book, Prayer Walk: Becoming a Woman of Prayer, Strength, and Discipline, please comment below.  By posting in our comments, you are giving us permission to share your name if you win!  If you have an outside the US mailing address, your prize could be substituted with an e-book of our choice.

Join the conversation: What in your life needs resurrecting?