Last month, I wrote a post in which I said that most setbacks are temporary. But what do we do when they just seem to go on and on?
I know how hard it can be to hold on to hope when it feels like things will never change. But I want to encourage you that though you may feel like your problem is lasting forever, God has not forgotten you. He sees you and He is actively working all things to your benefit (Romans 8:28).
Whether you’re facing challenges in your vocation, your health, your family, or your goals, here are seven things you can do to sustain your soul while you wait for circumstances to shift.
1. Be honest with how you’re feeling. Talk to God about what’s in your heart. You don’t have to hide your emotions from Him. He’s big enough to handle your hurt, your questions, your anger, and your confusion. He wants to hear what your feeling and thinking. He wants to have a conversation with you about what’s happening. He wants to be the friend who comforts you, the counselor who advises you, and the lover who showers affection on you. He wants to be with you wherever you are and walk with you through whatever you’re going through.
Going through a hard situation with another person creates a special bond. I’ve seen this happen in my relationship with my husband as we’ve faced various life challenges. If we allow it, the same thing can happen in our relationship with God.
2. Find out what God has to say about your situation. Ask God to reveal the truth of who He is for you in your situation. Ask Him to show you how He sees what is happening. He might respond through a still small voice, or a Bible verse, or a song. Whatever you need, whatever you’re going through, God has a promise for you.
3. Hold on to hope by meditating on the promises God has given you. When you find a promise, write it down and spend time meditating on it. Comfort yourself with it and reassure yourself of the truth that God is not a liar—He will always keep His promises (Deuteronomy 7:9-10; Psalm 145:13).
Don’t let your circumstances dictate how you see God. Instead, let God be the one who determines how you’ll view your circumstances. Trust Him above all else. This is what it means to walk by faith.
4. Speak the truth God is showing you. Both the Bible and modern science affirm the power of audible words to shift our circumstances, improve our perspective, and generate joy. As you write your promises, take time to speak or sing them out loud. Declare that God is faithful and thank Him for all the ways He has come through for you and all the ways He promises to continue to do so. For more on this topic, check out my articles on the power of words from a biblical perspective here and from a scientific perspective here.
5. See your setback as an opportunity. As difficult as they can be, the troubles we face can help us develop perseverance, spiritual maturity, and confidence in God (see James 1:1-12). In fact, our problems are actually opportunities to see God’s supernatural power at work in our lives—the chance to trust Him to come through. After Lazarus died, before Jesus resurrected him, Jesus said this to His disciples: “For your sake, I’m glad I wasn’t there, because now you have another opportunity to see who I am so that you will learn to trust in me” (John 11:15 TPT). This perspective is in no way meant to invalidate the pain of our setbacks, but it does prompt us to make the most of where we’re at.
6. Find someone you trust to help support you in what you’re facing. Ask a friend or mentor or family member if they will partner in prayer with you. We’re not meant to do this alone.
7. Finally, remember this: Even the worst setbacks have an end. A day IS coming when ALL our tears will be wiped away, all sadness and suffering will cease, every trouble and trial will end.
Today I’m thanking God that He is at work in your life, that your faith is growing ever stronger, and for the good things He has coming your way. You are loved, you are wanted, and God has a beautiful purpose for your life! Don’t give up!
Do you have a need you’d like prayer for? I’m here to support you and I’d love to be praying for you! Send me a message here to let me know how I can pray!
I want to hear from you!
What’s one promise you’ve been meditating on? I'd love to hear about it in the comments below!
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I wrote this post because I’m on a mission to encourage and equip women to live the life of faith, passion, and purpose that we were made for. You can help make a difference by sharing this post with a friend (or friends!) who you think would be encouraged or inspired by it. Thanks!
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