The Voyager: Encouragement for Life's Journey
Below you will find articles from our Church's leadership meant to encourage you and give you insight into questions about life, faith, and God.
Storms in life are inevitable, but we all have a choice how we will face the storm. As painful as life is sometime, Jesus promised us that we can have the peace of God to shelter us in the midst of life's storms.
"I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
1) Have Faith Like A Child.
Jesus told us that his kind of peace is beyond our ability to comprehend with our minds. However, just because it's beyond our comprehension doesn't mean it's difficult to experience. In fact, it's the opposite. It takes childlike faith in our Father God. Faith that he loves us and wants the best for us. Faith that even though he never promised life would be easy, he did promise he would always be with us. Faith that the problems that are so overwhelming to us, are easy for him. To have faith is to believe in what we may not be able to explain or understand. I can't explain or understand everything about God and how he works, but a god who can be explained isn't really God. A god that can be explained and understood is limited by our understanding. Our Father God has no limits and he loves us. So have faith, like a child, that your Father God will carry you through this storm.
2) Forgive anyone who has wronged you.
Sometimes the challenges we face are because people have failed us, wronged us, and disappointed us. Whether people acknowledge and apologize for their part in the hurt we feel or not - forgiveness is always necessary to experience peace. When you forgive others it's not just for their sake, it's for your sake. The Lord knew how important forgiveness was which is why he said that we would be forgiven by God only if we've forgiven others (Matthew 6:15). It's not that God is angrily withholding forgiveness from us, it's that he wants to rid us of all the bitterness and resentment we feel towards others so that we can have peace. The way he rids us of that resentment is by us forgiving others.
Choosing to forgive opens the conduit of God's peace and forgiveness into your life. What you do for others God will do for you. There is great freedom and peace in knowing you are forgiven and in being free of all resentment towards others.
3) Choose to Trust God.
Every time we face a storm in life we have a choice to make. Will we face it in our own strength and ability or will we allow our Father to carry us in the storm? Will we put our hope in him? Making the choice to trust God and worship him in the midst of a storm is what makes the peace of God a reality in our life. Like peace, trust will sometimes defy understanding. All I can do is tell you my own testimony that though people have failed me many times, and I have failed myself, God has never failed me. When I put my trust in God and not in my ability or the ability of others to rescue me, He has always come through. Not always like I was expecting but always in a way that surprises me with how good he is and how much he loves me. One thing I've learned is that God is trustworthy.
Are you facing a storm? Why not pray with me. "Father, I am overwhelmed with the circumstances I am facing right now. I don't know how I will make it through this storm but I trust in you. I know you have the answers and that even when I don't see the answer, you are with me. Thank you for carrying me in this storm. I ask for your peace that is beyond my understanding to shelter me right now. Thank you Father."
Article by Pastor Shawna Carpenter, March 2020