I've been reading Joni's newest publication, "A Place of Healing" and I feel like I've just jumped inside the pages with Joni - utterly caught in the journey with her, each page rapidly turning as we together grapple with the issue of suffering.
Suffering. Pain. Heartache. Hope. Restoration. It's all there - a picture of what it looks like to persevere over insurmountable odds. To boldly look suffering in the eye and say, "you may be a part of my life but you do not have any authority to cloud my hope or dull my joy, in the name of Jesus!"
And, that's what Joni does every day. With every breath, with every word she speaks - she overcomes with Christ.
Joni looked at the line in the sand that she draws every day, and day after day chooses Jesus. Because, where else can she go?
Where else can we go? We suffer. We feel pain. Maybe not all of us experience physical pain but we know what pain looks like. We know what it's like to think that perhaps God has forgotten us - our prayers, our cries for help. My own journey is laced with pain - most currently, the anguish of my husband's sudden layoff over 20 months ago.
Over 20 months of joblessness despite hundreds of applications. Twenty months of financial devastation, dreams unrealized, role reversal that has shed my husband of his apparent self-worth, purpose and motivation.
We have been stripped down. But, when we have been made weak, He is made strong!
"My Grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness!" (2 Cor. 12:9)
This is what it's all about! It's about living in that feeling of complete surrender. Letting it have space in your life.
Drawing that line in the sand and choosing to move forward even while shattered.
Understanding that you can do nothing without the power of Jesus lifting you up - knowing you're not getting through each day on your own. You're being carried by the Holy of Holies to do His will. Even while you can't even muster the strength, while you think you're not going anywhere, He is already rescuing you.
Will God deliver my husband and me through our dark valley? Absolutely. Will it be exactly what we prayed for? Probably not - and that's the exciting part.
Joni holds that same raw excitement - you can feel it as you turn each page with her. And suddenly, what you're going through in life's valley seems far less devastating and far more redemptive.
And the promise of that is worth every page.
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PS - There is a lot of activity at Joni and Friends® as we approach the summer! Take a look here!Download Promo Pack File »