This post is by Jen Shultz.
Life is hard right now and not just for me, but for the entire world. I feel like I have begun my last several posts with this sentiment. Write what you know, right? This world feels hard and chaotic right now. We are a year and a half into a pandemic, political and civil issues causing major division in our country, and the deaths of 13 Americans and 170+ Afghans all while trying to exit a decades long war. Evil feels very tangible today. It’s oppressive and constant, especially if you tune in to the news or are on any type of social media. To put it simply, I am overwhelmed emotionally and mentally and that puts a strain on my physical health.
How does one combat that constant pull downward? Deeper and deeper we go into a place where we hope any additional bad thing will not be able to reach us. Where do we go when it’s clear that these wars are not just being waged one a virtual front? Where do we go when we realize no matter how deep we go, the bad finds us because battles are being waged by our communities, our nations, and even our own families? We must realize that while it feels like the whole world has gone mad, this is bigger than just earthly battles.
These battles are a direct result of spiritual war being waged. (Ephesians 6:12) These battles are not just being played out on your televisions or computers, they are being waged in Heavenly realms. Spiritual warfare you say? It is a heady topic, but this “crushed by the weight of the world” feeling is not the result of not getting last night’s dishes done or yelling at your spouse and then feeling bad. It is deeper than that. Much deeper.
I hear the protests in your heart, friend. I went through those doubts as well. The enemy wants you to believe you are not equipped or qualified for this battle. Do not believe that lie. You are indeed. You were born with everything you need to be successful inside of you. What makes you uniquely qualified is your commitment to meet with God and to pray. When we carve out time to sit and rest in Him, we are ushered into God’s presence. We give Him these worries and feelings of inadequacy and being overwhelmed. He takes those from us, and in return, we are given a peace that can only come from the One who has already won the war.
I know we are all weary and looking for comfort, but this very action of meeting regularly with God gives us access to Eternity. There will be no more pain, sorrow, or tears. To me, that sounds like a much better use of my time than Facebook or Netflix.
In the sea of life, we will come upon storms. When those storms arise, seek His face. There you will find understanding, love, and a soul deep sigh knowing that these are not battles you must fight alone. He is with us, always.
Jen is a small town, Oklahoma girl married to a superhero. Together, they are raising a family on second chances, shiplap, and a shoestring. She is a firm believer in grace, organization, and efficiency. She finds great satisfaction in taking broken items and giving them new life, likely because that is exactly what God did for her. She over uses the word shine, exclamation points, and emojis. She cheers too loud in the stands of her kids’ activities and hugs more than is socially acceptable. A natural born encourager and armchair warrior, she is learning to redefine her mission field and make the most of each day she is given. She has recently been promoted from breast cancer warrior to breast cancer survivor. She’s chronically ill and chronically positive- not necessarily in that order. She is learning to practice perseverance over perfection and longs for the day she gets to see her grandparents and Jesus’ face. Until then, she is just looking for Grace in the Grind.
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