Exploring the news headlines these days aren’t that convenient – especially when you can only read about: floods, earthquakes, tsunami alerts, political turmoil, destroyed crops due to heavy rain, job lay-offs, bankrupt companies and soaring prices of goods & services.
These past months were wrapped with great calamities in my country (Philippines) and have caused so much havoc and anxiety. We are no strangers to this feeling. Worrying seemed to be a default setting for all of us – especially, to those of you who are working outside the country and away from your families. Even at this current time, heavy rains and typhoons are continually visiting us. And we worry more. Our hearts are disturbed, our faith is shaking and our focus shifts to what was going on: unemployment, financial crisis and unstable sources of income.
We, who are left here in the country, often worry for our loved ones abroad. Those loved ones abroad are also worrying about us. Worry works vice-versa. But we are left with no choice. The possibilities aren’t that simple to do – going home or coming there abroad, spending too much time on long-distance calls, applying for petition to migrate, acquiring a visa to visit, relocating to a new place away from typhoon-visited areas and even sending packages – would cost a lot of financial resources which defeats the most common reason of working far away from home. Indeed, we are restless.
Trials like these add up to the longing and homesickness each one experiences yet we must not forget that our worries are known to our Almighty Father. Worry can be our first reaction to all these tests but it shouldn’t be our only reaction. When we are almost ready to forget God, let’s take one moment to look at the brighter side – that we are still alive. We are still in good health. We can still go to church, pray and read our Bibles with freedom. Yes, we might not have the abundance of financial resources but we are still able to eat at least three times a day (even with snacks in between), able to buy enough clothing, pay for our rent and mortgages and even travel to the closest island for a short relaxation. Shall we not thank God for these things? I urge you that we must.
You see, even if how bad and unpredictable these times can be, our worries are healed when we learn the art of thankfulness and trust to Jesus. Our resources might be limited-we cannot know how our loved ones are doing abroad each minute of the day, we don’t have 24-hour access to long-distance calls and we cannot even see their faces everyday but we must put in our hearts that they will be okay, simply because we have God. His power is not limited. His grace has no measure. His faithfulness is new each morning and His purposes are always for our best. That alone is enough to comfort our restless minds and enough to give peace to our weary hearts. When we do this continually, the joy that God gives cannot be taken away from us. And the next time that trials will come, we can react first with prayer instead of worry. I must be honest that this can’t be done overnight. This whole thing needs full surrender to the Lord, obedience and a committed heart to endure and submit in His will. Why not start today? 🙂
Let this wonderful promises of God in Psalm 46 (excerpts) remind us along the way:
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof…
God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her, and that right early. The heathen raged, the kingdoms were moved: he uttered his voice, the earth melted. The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge…
He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; he breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear in sunder; he burneth the chariot in the fire.
Be still, and know that I am God…
Short note: Tagalog version is coming up. Keep reading ChristianBlessings! 🙂
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Thank you for an explanation of some of the problems our brothers and sisters are facing. I pray many will be encouraged by your words and be strengthened by our Lord as they look to Him, assured that He will undertake.
We serve an amazing God!
Amen, our God is amazing. I’m praying that too, that each one will find comfort and joy in the presence of the Lord. Many are looking at it at other places, but only Jesus can cross the impossible. God bless 🙂
Joyce, you have been missed. Thank you for your encouragement to compatriots, and taking the time to post the Tagalog blog. We look forward to it. The Lord be praised.through you.
Amen… so often when facing life’s challenges we need to be still and know that He is God. .. He is bigger than any problem, person or persecution.
Thank you for all your encouragement Evelyn, keeping all of you in my prayers. 🙂
Hi Joyce, good to read your post and know that you are still there. Your blog presence has been missed. Indeed, God is our refugee and strength no matter what is happening.
Thank you so much! I’ve been missing a lot here 🙂 Thank you for your encouragement!