Trusting God During Difficult Times
Susanne Scheppmann

"For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations." Psalm 100:5 (NIV)

Horrified, I placed the phone back in its charger. My mind reeled. What could I say to one of my dearest friends after this new tragedy had struck? First, she experienced the loss of a fourteen-year-old son to brain cancer. Now her eldest son, only eighteen, had been discovered mugged and murdered. Incomprehensible.

She asked, "Why?" I had no answer other than, "I don't know, but I cling to the factual knowledge that God is good, regardless. Tragedies in this life are beyond our understanding this side of heaven."

I believe Jesus is good, and that knowledge sings from the depths of my soul. This nugget of truth is more precious than life itself to me. We have been taught and recognize that faith is not something we can necessarily see, hear, feel, taste, or touch. It is stepping out of our comfort zones and trusting God—regardless of how we feel emotionally. The Bible explains, "Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see" (Hebrews 11:1, NIV).

The true story of Horatio G. Spafford demonstrates this type of faith in God's goodness. Spafford wrote the familiar hymn, "It is Well with My Soul" in 1872 after his four daughters drowned, soon after his own financial bankruptcy. He, somehow, held onto the fact that despite the outward circumstances, God was good. He wrote, "And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight." He knew that his faith was not in vain, and that someday he would see the meaning and purpose of all the tragedy surrounding his life at that moment.

For myself I think my greatest lesson of faith has been in the acknowledgement that God is good—all the time. Oswald Chambers wrote, "Faith by its very nature must be tested and tried. And the real trial of faith is not that we find it difficult to trust God, but that God's character must be proven trustworthy in our own minds."

There will always be moments of uncertainty. I find comfort in the words written by David Jeremiah in My Heart's Desire:
You may sometimes feel awkward and uncomfortable, and find yourself saying, "Is this really true? I don't see anything in it. I don't hear God's voice. I don't feel His presence." There are days like that for all of us. The pursuit of God has no shortcuts. You simply must keep walking, keep seeking, and keep yearning. Keep at it, and you won't be disappointed.
God is good, even as I mourn with my friend. I have witnessed her grief, anger, and doubt. But throughout the passing months, I have watched her cling to Jesus with hands wet with tears. My friend believes God is good all the time even when she can't feel it with her emotions. Her faith rests in the fact, "The Lord is good and his love endures forever."

Dear Lord, grant me the faith to know that You are good all the time, even during the most difficult circumstances of this life. When I am weak, lift me up. Enable me to accept the love and comfort from others who love me, but let me rely on Your everlasting love for me. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Birds in My Mustard Tree by Susanne Scheppmann

Trials for Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life by Janet Eckles

Visit Susanne’s blog

If you are in the Dallas metro area, you're invited to be in the studio audience for the appearance of P31’s own Lysa TerKeurst on the LIFE Today show with James & Betty Robison, one week from today on May 26 at 7 p.m. Tickets are free, but you must reserve your seat. Call 817-354-3655 or email audience@loi.org. The studios are located at 1801 West Euless Boulevard, Euless, Texas 76040.

Application Steps:
Memorize one of the Power Verses below to repeat and remind yourself of God's goodness during difficult times in your life.

Reflections:
What situations in my life do I feel are out of my faith-comfort zone? Do I believe that God is good all the time?

Power Verses:
Psalms 91:2, "I will say of the Lord, "He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust."(NIV)

Deuteronomy 31:8, "The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged." (NIV)

Psalms 27:5, "For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock." (NIV)

© 2009 by Susanne Scheppmann. All rights reserved.

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9 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

When I read the devotion this morning. It made me just STOP.To just PAUSE. I actually couldn't move.
When the words in the bible says that we are one, and we are to rejoice with each other, and to mourn with each other. I truly understand it in more debt with reading about this beautiful woman's story. Because I begin hurting. I felt as if I had lost 2 boys.
I often complain about how aggravating and annoying my children can be at times. But now, this story has taught me that the problems that I cry about sometimes are not as half as overbearing as I think. This woman has lost two precious babies(sons) who were not even over 18. I am speechless. I pray for her, and I will from now on for as long as I can. I will like for you to tell her that I love her, and she is my sister. I pray that she will grow stronger and stronger every day. I pray for her courage and will to cling on to the Lord's unchanging hands. Because of this I am going to hold my children more, and not take for granted what the Lord has given me. 3 precious angels from heaven. With Love, In the name of the Father, the Son, and the precious Holy Ghost, In Jesus name, Amen.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

My heart goes out to this woman who has lost two sons. May God be her help and strength and courage. May He put His loving arms around her and give her His peace. May He put His healing Hand on her broken heart that she may be healed and go on to help others with their grief. Praising God for Himself and His plans for us that we know not.

Blogger Jessica said...

AMEN to this devotion!! Something that we need to be reminded of often, that God does not change based on our circumstances or our emotions. We have to choose to believe His Everlasting Truth.

Thank you.

Blogger thatgirl1125 said...

This definitely helped me today. My daughter is very down because she has to go to summer school since she didn't do well enough on a standardized test to be promoted to the next grade. Although this is not even close to the pain your friend has faced, my daughter's spirit is broken in her personal situation. And I hurt for her. But I can share with her those power verses found at the end of your article and even encourage her to develop her own. Thank you for sharing.

Anonymous Eve said...

I hurt for this mother...believe me, I do, as I do for my friend in the same situation. This devotion is God speaking thru the writer; God knows i read this each morning before my workday. 12 days ago my good friend's son was found dead in his apartment at college. We are all in shock. We hurt even more for her because four years ago, she lost her youngest (of three children) daughter to a brain tumor. We felt so much for her then, and now are in shock that she has lost a second child. I pray her faith will carry her. Thank you, writers, for your messages and encouragement.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Job

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I too could not understand why we were being presented with hardship at this time in our lives, i have come to see Gods hand in this and it took me awhile, i saw his love
and felt his closeness,my heart goes out to this mother I pray she finds refuge in Gods love and that she too may find the peace in her life that only he can offer. For our God is a merciful and loving God.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow! This is truly and amazing blessing that I just came across this. I was searching on the internet trying to find blog sites of people that had been through trials because I am currently trying to help a friend cope with the fact that his mom has cancer and she isn't expected to live through this weekend. I just can't ever imagine the awful things that people go through. Everyday i'm realizing more and more that we won't ever understand what someone else is going through because we all go through things in different ways. God is constantly molding my heart to help him deal with my friend's circumstances right now and I believe that the only thing we can say is.."God is good, all the time", and let them know that we will always be there for them.

This is truly a blessing, we often need to be reminded of this. Thank you so much, keep up the good word for our Lord.

may your day be filled with blessings!

Blogger Ms. Lattimore said...

Thank you so much for this post. I recently lost my bestfriend in a tragic car accident. She died the first day of this year (2010) and I've been struggling to get out of bed ever since. This morning I prayed to God for peace of mind and to take away all the pain. And I was searching the internet to find inspirational scriptures and I found this post. Thank you! Like you, I believe that He is "good all the time" and I am so grateful for His everlasting love. I still mourn my friend. She was a major part of my life, I love/d her dearly, and it hurts that she is gone. However, this post helped me to realize that "faith by its very nature must be tested" and that this is a test of my faith. And I know God will see me through. I am praying for you and your friend who has lost her sons. My God continue to bless and keep you both and pour into you 10x what you have poured into the lives of others through your ministry! In Jesus' matchless name I pray, Amen!

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