Finding God’s Presence In Unexpected Trials

Finding God’s Presence In Unexpected Trials

Today’s guest post about finding God’s presence in unexpected trials was written by my sweet friend Tara. 

I remember standing in the hallway of the ER. It was New Year’s Eve, and I was surrounded by people. I wasn’t at the family gathering I had planned on attending. Instead, our family was huddled together trying to gather comfort from each other’s presence. We heard the words there is a shadow on your husband’s brain and we need to send you by ambulance to another hospital for further testing.

I was surrounded and yet I felt alone. 

I remember what it felt like the first time I set out to drive 12 hours alone. My husband had moved to Heaven, and I was out of options for getting where I needed to go. But on the other side of courage, fresh hope was waiting, encouragement from other women and a “God story” I never would have seen coming. 

Alone Yet Surrounded

I was alone and yet I was surrounded. God was surrounding me with his presence. I had learned in the last 2 years since my beloved’s death that loneliness while being painful can also be a pathway to peace. 

When we are lonely, we are often staring lack right in the face. Where are my people? Where is the comfort I am longing for? And where is your provision in this situation God? You say you are faithful, and I want to believe it, but my feelings are loud. 

Feelings ARE loud. Aren’t they beloved? And yet, we get to redirect our hearts to Christ, our hope. 

For me when I was standing in the ER that looked like nothing more than calling on the name of Jesus. I wasn’t looking ahead to that mountain of brain cancer that stood before us. Just clinging to the hem of His garment and keeping my eyes on Jesus. 

Growing Courage

A few years after Alan moved to Heaven, I was getting a bit smoother at redirecting my heart. That doesn’t mean I didn’t “feel” the loneliness or anxiety or fear. 

But courage was growing, and it taught me to OPEN MY MOUTH.

Faith that we are not alone when we feel like it, but that Jesus is always there looked like speaking out loud as I went. I practiced His presence the entire drive by sharing my thoughts on the scenery I drove through, bringing my loved ones to his feet and giving thanks for all the things. God used that discipline of practicing His presence to remind me that I was not forgotten right before my car engine blew. 

Full Life

It would have been so easy to despair. To be angry that while I was “trusting” Him, He turned a blind eye to me. And yet, it was all a set up to shine a light on the provision that would come next. Life is messy. It’s not all good and beautiful and it’s not all bad and heartbreaking.

It’s FULL! 

Life is full of HIS goodness and His presence and though we might feel alone. We never are. 

Isaiah 41:10 ~ Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Spend a moment asking yourself when the times are you feel tempted to doubt God’s presence.  What are two ways you can practice His presence in that moment?  Scripture is full of promises that our God goes with us. Find one that speaks to your heart and memorize it. 

Hiding God’s Word in our heart’s plants the perfect seed in them so when life comes along and surprises us with unexpected trials His spirit can bring it to our remembrance. 

About Tara

Tara is a widow and mother of four young adults.
Following her husband’s move to Heaven in 2016 she began sharing her story of grieving with hope. What began as a way to testify of God’s goodness during this season of suffering, quickly turned into a passion to equip others with the ever- present hope of Christ. She now leads others to finding hope in hard places by showing them how to “lift up your eyes” to the presence of God in a tangible way.

She spends her time teaching, writing, speaking, and podcasting. But her favorite thing is being Nana to her sweet grands.

You can find her encouragement, on her podcast, “Seek and Savor.” You can follow her on Instagram and Facebook!

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