• Jill Jarrell Newsome

And This Is Why We Thank God For The Hard Times!

Yesterday I wrote about a girl that I have never met but we have become friends and I pray for her numerous times a day. A relative reached out to me and asked me if I would talk to her because she had just been diagnosed with an aggressive breast cancer. I shared in the blog that it is not easy for me to reach out and pray with her because of my tears and it also brings back difficult memories. She is also a wife and a mother.

1 Peter 3: 15, "But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect." I believe this is the best way to share the gospel. When we share our story it is our unique story so no one can debate our feelings. When I am reminded of all of God’s goodness and what all He has done in the past, it increases my faith even more! When we share our journey with someone who is going through something similar we encourage them. Romans 1: 12, "that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith." They have a connection with us and see hope in us. We can share their burden. Galatians 6: 2, "Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ."

So last week, right after I wrote the blog about my friend, she texted and asked if I had time for a call, I knew she was at the doctor right then because we had prayed earlier. The moment I heard her voice, quivering, my heart sank. She shared that the doctor could not find her tumor or where it had been! We both cried and thanked God. Later I texted her that I was still thinking about it and giving thanks. She texted, "Our God is awesome and I think he's using this cancer to remind me of that." So proud of her to keep looking for the blessings!

When I asked if I could share this we talked about how God uses our tough times. I asked her where she was, spiritually, prior to her diagnosis: dead, coma, alive, very aware of God's goodness, etc. She said "somewhere between alive and coma. And now I am totally aware of God's goodness and glory!!" And this is why we thank God for the tough times because they make us grow in Him! We both have a testimony that shows that God is greater than our circumstances. It is not about us - it's about God and how He works in us. And we do not even know what the ripple effects are!

"When the winds blow hard on a tree, the roots stretch and grow the stronger. Let it be so with us."


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