“Now this is his commandment: that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he gave us the commandment. And the person who keeps his commandments resides in God, and God in him. Now by this we know that God resides in us: by the Spirit he has given us.” –1 John 3:23–24
“The Lord is faithful, even when life and others are not.” This is a phrase that has become a motto in my life and our home. I’ve experienced this first-hand and will forever speak of the faithfulness of the Lord, even in the dark, devastating, and, what seemed to be, unfair seasons in my life.
I remember the night so clearly. It was the first night that I questioned if I was “enough” for my husband to choose us and our marriage when I was blindsided by betrayal. As quickly as that thought crossed my mind, an even louder voice spoke directly to me asking “Am I enough for you?” I knew immediately that regardless of how my circumstances would pan out in the end, the Lord was near me, He was with me and He was enough.
Will we choose obedience and faithfulness to the Lord when others hurt us, betray us, or treat us unfairly? And no, I’m not suggesting staying in an abusive relationship by any means, but what I am asking is, will we not lose heart when we are faced with grief and disappointment and when all we have left is Jesus? Is He enough?
As we read at the end of Genesis 31, Jacob rebuked his father-in-law, Laban. He was angry, and rightfully so. This had been building up for over twenty years as Jacob faithfully and loyally served Laban. Jacob went above and beyond, working hard and sacrificing much, even when others didn’t see or notice his integrity or support of Laban’s successful enterprises. In return, Jacob was treated unfairly by Laban, including changing his wages ten times!
What we see through the naked eye pales in comparison to what we see through the lens of faith.
What we might perceive in the moment as rejection can often be seen in hindsight as protection.
We live in a fallen world and even in this story the characters are all flawed and deceitful, but God always has a way of overturning evil. The commandment for us is to believe in Jesus and love one another. Blessings, favor, protection, and wisdom will all be an overflow as we abide in Him. We can walk in full assurance of the Lord’s nearness as we experience the supernatural and unexplainable workings of the Holy Spirit in our life, especially in the midst of our trials.
There may be relationships in our lives that are best served by separation. This was a hard lesson for me to learn, especially regarding friendships that I thought I would have for life. The betrayal was devastating. The deceit was heartbreaking. The abandonment was crushing. However, as I laid these heavy situations and circumstances down before the Lord, the Holy Spirit was faithful in healing my heart by keeping it tender towards those who have hurt me. I was met with comfort as I set boundaries and simply walked away. The Lord is our defender and the best one to do that job on our behalf.
We see this time and time again throughout the Bible and I have seen it and experienced it in my own life: what I thought was rejection was truly the Lord’s protection. May we draw closer to God in our seasons of hurt and grief and be found faithful in the suffering, which produces character.
When all is stripped away, God is more than enough.
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