Deeply Loved & Fully Known
“So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while. These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world. You love him even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy.” 1 Peter 1:6-8 (NLT)
Have you ever faced something that feels so much bigger than you? Have you ever felt completely overwhelmed by the problems in your life or the struggles you are facing? Has joy ever felt completely unattainable for you? Well there are two things I can say to encourage you today: first, we have all been there, and second, in the midst of your trial, God is always doing something behind the scenes.
You are never alone in what you are facing and there is always a reason for why you are facing it.
First Peter has a lot of encouraging messages within it that truly challenge the soul, but I think these verses right here in chapter one were my favorite. In my own life– and even throughout this year– I have faced struggles and trials that have almost felt inescapable and longed for joy in ways I never have before. Within the trials I was facing, I knew that God had a purpose in them but at the time, I obviously didn’t know what that purpose was. I just knew that if I trusted in God’s plans for me and continued to give him my whole heart that he would take care of me.
Being on the other side of these trials I have faced and now seeing what God’s purpose was through them, I can genuinely say that I am so in awe of how God works and how each and every situation he puts me through is for my own benefit. Through each trial I have faced, I can also say I have come out of it with the inexpressible joy of Jesus, just like this verse says.
If we don’t exercise our faith in the process of our trials, do we even have faith? God has given us this amazing gift of salvation and we stand on such a solid foundation in His truth. Sometimes, when things aren’t easy we forget to trust God, the Maker and Perfecter of all things.
In our key verse, Paul states that in the trials we face, our genuine faith will show, because even though we don’t see God, we can completely trust Him. There is so much beauty in that! There is no one more beautiful than someone that lives their life in complete surrender to God and trusts Him even in the hardest of times. That's what I want to be identified as. Someone in complete surrender to God. Someone that has such a deep love for Him and trust in all that He is doing. Even when we face trials that oppose us or hurt us, it is an opportunity to let God grow us in ways that most people never experience.
It is a blessing to even be able to suffer for God because it means that God is working through you. I don’t know what you may be facing today, but I know that God loves you so deeply and the things He has set out for your life are so amazing that you can't even begin to fathom them. In each and every struggle that you face, God has a purpose and a plan to use it for your benefit. Each and every day, He is growing your strength and courage and boldness so you can be the beautiful person He has purposed for you to be.
Your life is in the hands of the savior, who sacrificed his life because of his immense love for you, you are more than safe, and loved in a way this world will never be able to comprehend. Continue to trust God wholeheartedly, no matter how big your trials may seem, and he will pull you through each and every time.
In every trial I have faced I can say with absolute confidence that it was God who pulled me through and it was through his unfailing grace and compassion for me that he has grown my faith and strength in leaps and bounds. God never leaves us high and dry, he always gives us exactly what we need and more than we deserve.
I’m completely overwhelmed and in awe of who God is and what he has done for me and the people in my life. There are no words that do his name justice. If you only get one thing out of this I hope you understand that you are so loved and cared for, please keep fighting, don’t let the enemy get the last word, because Jesus already did at the cross when he saved your life. Don’t give up, because God has a beautiful and inexpressible Joy waiting for you, and i can tell you it’s the best thing there is because i’m living in it.
1 Peter 5:7-10 (NLT) says “Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are. In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.”
Give it all to God today. Give him every emotion that is overwhelming you, each situation that is bringing you stress, and let him immerse you in his joy. Remember that you are never alone and deeply cared for. Don’t give the enemy the satisfaction of falling into his traps, yet fight against his evil schemes with the strength you have in your savior Jesus Christ.
C.S. Lewis said “Look for yourself, and you will find in the long run only hatred, loneliness, despair, rage, ruin, and decay. But look for Christ, and you will find Him, and with Him everything else thrown in.”
Set your eyes on Jesus this morning and you will find all the satisfaction and encouragement that you could ever need. Put your trust in him fully and you experience vastly what true love is. God has you within his arms, and he is caring for you this very moment, now give him all of yourself, and delve wholeheartedly into the most important relationship in your life. Get ready, because it’s an absolute amazing ride.