When I was in my twenties, I had what I like to call my first midlife crisis. Having recently graduated from college with no real marriage prospects, I felt lost. The natural progression of events in my mind was: college – marriage – children. But the Lord had other plans for me. Those plans, however, did not mesh with mine.
So, I rebelled.
Instead of trusting in God’s providential plan for my life, I took it upon myself to forge my own future, one that involved love, happiness, and pursuit of me. I started looking for love in all the wrong places, seeking my place in the world–because everyone else seemed to fit in but me, and searching for contentment with myself in this life. I did not understand God, and I surely did not see anything to be thankful for in this pitiful life.
Slowly I began to sink deeper into the muck of this world.
I rebelled against the word of God and despised His counsel (Psalm 107:11). So, the Lord subjected me to “bitter labor” (verse 12) in the form of loneliness, depression, and emptiness. It seemed like “there was no one to help” (verse 12). Even my boyfriend gave up on me. There didn’t seem like there was anything to be thankful for anymore.
I was broken.
That is when I gave my life back to the Lord. It was a night I’ll never forget. Humiliated, I lay face down on the floor of my rented house and cried out to God in distress, seeking His forgiveness. Repenting of my sins, He saved me from my distress (verse 13). He brought me “out of darkness and the deepest gloom and broke away [my] chains” (verse 14). He showed me that I could depend on Him, and my life has never been the same since.
Six years of marriage and three children later, I still struggle with contentment. My physical body — even at age 34 — is weak and prone to illness and disease. My faith wavers — just like Israel’s did — and I wonder if He is reminding me once again of His great love for me as I grapple with the issue of my own mortality.
But I am grateful because the Lord is faithful and good. Even though He may choose to give hard trials, He is still sovereign. Only He is able to deliver us from darkness. Only He can free us from the chains of sin and death.
Even though the world is swirling hurly-burly around me today and even though I don’t know what the outcome of my life will be, I am grateful because the Lord has saved me, and He is in control of it all. He has not abandoned me to myself but, time and time again, has shown me unconditional love in spite of myself.
No one else — no thing else– can satisfy like the Lord.
There is something to be thankful for today, even if you feel hopeless. Remember today how God has saved you in your most desperate times. Give Him thanks for His eternal love.
If you have rebelled against God and feel forever lost from Him, you’re not. He loves you. He wants to bring you out of darkness and into the light. Cry out to the Lord in your trouble. He will still the storm in your soul.
If I can pray for you today, please let me know. You can leave a message in the comments below or email me at email@example.com.