None of us are immune to the burdens and pains of this life. Though we have a God who loves us, we all experience loss, hardship, and disappointment. And in the midst of it all, it might feel as though we’re all alone, with no one to understand us, no one to guide us, no one to let us know they’ve been there too.
Sometimes, in those seasons of life that ache beyond words, we just want to hear that it’s okay to not feel okay. We want to know we’re not alone in this chasm of loneliness we stand in. We want to be held by arms that bear the scars of similar wounds.
In our most vulnerable moments, we need more than pithy statements that attempt to assure us that all will be well. Instead, we need one another’s stories. Stories create a space for us to be — to be known, to be validated in our feelings and experiences, and to give us words to express what we might not have been able to say before.
We can find ourselves and God again in one another’s stories, opening the door to let hope come through once more.
We won’t be able to understand why hard things happen in this world or in our lives, and that is okay. We can sit in the tension of that reality together. And not only do our suffering and pain connect us together in our humanity, but they also connect us to Christ, who bore it all on the cross. He held the tension between heaven’s holiness and the world’s brokenness, and though we all long for resurrection, we have a God who stayed in the tomb — in darkness, in death, in time suspended — before He rose again on the third day.
And these are His words to us:
“In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
John 16:33 NIV
From the introduction of Take Heart: 100 Devotions to Seeing God When Life’s Not Okay by the (in)courage community.
We hope each story in this book is an offering of hope to know that we’re in this together.
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