Jessie sat down across from Natalie at the coffee shop, smiling as she scooted into the booth. She knew her friend’s life had been tough for several months, and she was grateful for a chance to catch up with her, and offer support. Former colleagues, the two women didn’t get together as often as they’d like, but always enjoyed each other’s company.
“Natalie, tell me how you’re doing. I can’t imagine how you’re holding it together with everything that’s happened in the past year.”
Natalie smiled at her friend. “It’s so good to see you Jessie! And thank you for asking. I miss my mom every single day, and Charlie’s new job comes with a smaller paycheck than we’re used to...but we’re doing okay. Better than okay, actually. The kids are making friends at their new school, and I’ve joined a women’s Bible study at church. We have a lot to be grateful for.”
Jessie shook her head, “How can you be grateful, after the year you’ve had? I know how close you were to your mom, and after Charlie was laid off and you lost your house...I don’t know how you can stay so positive. I don’t know what I’d do if those things happened to us.”
Natalie paused for a moment, reflecting on her friend’s concern. “Right now my Bible study group is reading the book of Lamentations.”
“Lamentations 3:22-23 says, ‘Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning, great is your faithfulness.’”
“I’ve been thinking about those verses all week, and I feel like they were meant just for me. Last year was tough — the hardest year I’ve ever experienced — but God is still good. Sometimes I am sad, sometimes I am frustrated, sometimes I’m even angry about everything we’ve been through. But I think about how blessed I was to have a mom who loved me so much, and how grateful my family is to have a safe place to live, and how much Charlie enjoys his work, even though the pay is less. Last year felt like the bottom dropped out on us, but I know God never left us. We can be hopeful, because God is faithful — and that hasn’t changed.”
“Wow,” Jessie replied. “I’ve always known you were a Christian, but I’ve never been much of a church person. I guess I didn’t really know what faith was about. Can I go to your Bible study with you next week?”
Have you ever wondered where God was, in the midst of difficulty?
God’s Word, the Bible, promises we will not be ‘consumed’ by our circumstances. No matter how difficult the day, no matter how dire the situation seems, God is faithful. We can be hopeful in the midst of loss or trial, even when those around us see things as a lost cause.
Don’t give in to despair. Look up in prayer! God’s love never fails, and He is ready to listen, and ready to show up in your life.
Lord, thank you for your presence. We need you today, just as we’ve always needed you. Remind us to turn to you, embracing your mercies every day. Restore our hope. Your faithfulness is great, and we love you. Amen