Grove, Oklahoma, US
Via ASSIST News Service

Reaching out of darkness

Hope in dark times. PICTURE: Cherry Laithang/Unsplash

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” - John 16:33 (NIV).

When a dear friend phoned me recently, she asked for prayer, specifically for her son-in-law and daughter who were preparing to travel out of the country for a family emergency. The sister of her son-in-law had been murdered. My friend was not only grieving this senseless crime, but she was concerned for the safety of her loved ones who would be entering a foreign country where the laws and customs are vastly different from our own.

The couple and their families have been in my daily prayers. My friend has also kept me updated on their situation.

We live in a fallen world where life sometimes makes no sense. We often question, “Why, God, why?” My heart aches when I read or hear of those who are battling diseases or when loved ones are taken from us too soon or when a tragedy takes the lives of an entire family, a group of people or a segment of the population.

We wonder why people make the choices they do. We question how a loving God could allow these things to happen, especially to those who have done no harm. We even question our faith sometimes.

However, as Christians, we can take heart. We know that although we are never promised tomorrow, Jesus is our hope. In Him, we can find the grace that strengthens us to face each day and what it might bring.

Each day, I love watching the variety of birds flitting around my windows. A glass feeder filled with red liquid hangs outside my living room, inviting the hummingbirds to seek refreshment. Another bird feeder, painted bright orange, was made by a neighbor. The grape jelly-filled containers draw the orioles who love eating from the plastic cups.

When I watch these amazing creatures outside my windows, I’m reminded of Matthew 6:26: “Look at the birds of the air: they neither reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?”

While we sometimes question the events in our world that leave us fearful or anxious, we only need to return to Scripture for His blessed assurance and reminder of His amazing grace. Romans 8:18 says, “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”

When tragedy strikes, we ask, “What can I do?” Our first instinct is to take immediate action but feel helpless when we are at a loss.

However, we never have to face any difficulty alone. Philippians 4:6 tells us “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”

When you accept Jesus as your Savior and Lord, life doesn’t get easier. However, the comfort that comes from knowing He has overcome the world should bring peace.