Written by Kim Mihalec
It's been a cold winter. Your bones and muscles are aching. You drag yourself out of bed each morning and through the day, just waiting for the chance to fall back into bed at the end of the day. Life seems like one endless meaningless merry-go-round that's anything but merry. When you read the saying "can someone stop the world, I want to get off", you nod and sigh. If only you could get off the world for a day or two...
These feelings can have many causes - clinical depression, chronic ill health, trauma, grief, physical exhaustion... However, there is one sure remedy, regardless of the cause: taking it to God.
You may not be "into" God or religion, and if you've suffered long and deeply, the idea of taking your problems to God may seem ridiculously simplistic. On the other hand, if you've suffered long and deeply, what is there to lose?
Do you have a favourite painting or piece of artwork? Go study it. Drink in every detail and think about what it tells you about the artist. And now, study your own body. Even if it is broken, even if you are seriously disabled or missing limbs, you are a piece of art. Your body is a network of intricate details. Your mind, with its ability to analyse, consider, empathise and express itself is a work of pure genius. David, an ancient king wrote: "I am fearfully and wonderfully made..." (Psalm 139:14). Great men and women throughout the ages have marvelled at the complexity of the human body and the miracle of life. This incredible piece of artwork that you live inside is the product of a Great Designer.
Think about what this piece of artwork tells you about the Divine Artist, the Almighty God. In the Bible, we are told that we can see what God is like through His creation (Romans 1:20). Look at the plants around you, which live without moving. God has provided for them. Look at the living creatures, from the ants that invade your kitchen to the great whales that sail beneath the ocean. The diversity, beauty, harmony and symmetry all speak of a Mind beyond our comprehension.
Jesus Christ, the Son of God who came to die so that we could live forever, said that God actively provides for all of His creation - even the ravens and wild flowers. Jesus went on to say that if God looks after even common birds, He will certainly look after any person who calls on Him for help (Matthew 6:25 and 26; Luke 12:22-32).
Be warned, though, God looking after you may not turn out how you expect. Jesus Christ warned that those who followed Him would suffer hardship, in some cases great hardship. The Bible records that Paul the Apostle pleaded with God to be relieved from a "thorn in the flesh", only to be told "my grace is sufficient" (II Corinthians 12:7-9). However, Paul went on to write that he suffered gladly, knowing that this was all part of God's greater purpose both for Paul and the people he taught (II Corinthians 12:9-10).
One way or another, there will come a time when life gets hard for all of us. If we take our pain and discouragement to God, then we have our Creator on our team! He may not give us what we want, but we can trust Him to give us what we need - after all, He gave us life in the first place. You may find it hard to trust a God you can't see, especially if you've suffered long and deeply, but if your world is collapsing around you, what is there to lose?
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