for you are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble.”
Psalm 59:16 NIV
Sometimes my life is hard and I find myself in the midst of a struggle. My crisis could be relational, financial, physical, mental or even spiritual. There are times that I may experience multiple struggles at the same time. One thing I know for sure is that life is uncertain. All of our lives can change on a dime!
If you have not experienced loss, grief, sorrow, fear, disappointment, financial struggles, sickness, or relational problems, just hang in there. You will. If you think that you are the only person with problems you may be a little self absorbed. If you think that someone else has the perfect life, it may be that you do not know that person well enough to know what he or she is going through. I’m quite certain that I am very normal. The fact is that I should not expect to escape multiple opportunities to struggle, become bitter, angry, and fearful because of all the curves that life has the potential to throw at me.
I have often wondered why it seems I have been doomed to experience so much trouble. Sometimes my trouble has been caused by my own bad choices. There have been other times when I have been wounded by another person’s actions. A few times life has just happened and I have lost a loved one to death. There have been times when my husband has been out of work and we have watched our dreams fall apart.
In addition to all of those opportunities for trouble I have learned that there are many other circumstances in life that are completely out of my control. I may get a bad doctor’s report, or disaster may strike my home as the result of a storm, or there is an accident that involves someone I love.
It is having Jesus Christ in my life that helps me in the midst of all my trouble he is the one that gets me through the hard times and difficult circumstances in life. It is all the disappointments, pain and sorrow in my life that gives me all the more reason that I need to follow close behind Jesus in this life. It is what calls me to sit at Jesus’ feet and learn from him his ways, so that I might be better prepared for the times when the rug gets pulled out from under me or I get the wind knocked out of me.
There have been so many times in my life that I did not meet Jesus regularly in the garden of my heart. I have always paid a big price for avoiding the garden. I have many times procrastinated going to the garden, and there have been other times that I have totally missed my appointment with the Master Gardner because of my busy schedule.
Then it happens! I get my socks knocked off and that sends my bare feet madly running into the garden screaming and crying for help! Sometimes I’m angry or afraid. Other times I have had my heart trampled on. I have always found that when I am in desperate need of help, seeking Jesus in the garden of my heart is the perfect place to go.
What difficulty are you faced with right now?
Are you still trying to work your problems out in your own strength?
Have you considered going to the garden?
Are you waiting for things to get so bad that you go screaming into the garden?
What could be gained by going to the garden before your emotions get totally out of control?
Help me to see the garden as a safe place of refuge. Help me learn to go to the garden and seek you and your ways. Help me to use this time to prepare my heart for any difficulty that lies ahead. When tragedy strikes help me not to procrastinate or avoid coming straight to you. I know my help comes from you alone.
In Your Name I pray. Amen.