We may not feeling well when we faced with something shaken our faith. But if we still keep our faith by now, there must be something having helped us overcome this. Please share your experience~
A decade ago, adversity struck our family in a moment when we least expected it. My normal routine flipped upside down when I received a call from my husband as he was on a ministry trip. He calmly yet firmly told me the doctors received the results from his biopsy. He had cancer. My husband, a dad, a Pastor, an evangelist, a man of God, my best friend, had cancer. Not just any cancer, but metastasized melanoma. The kind of cancer that has no cure and spreads rapidly in the bloodstream. In that moment, I was faced with those two choices. I chose to do what I had done for years and trust in God that His position has and will always be higher than any adversities we face in life.
My husband battled six years of horrific clinical trials and treatments until there was nothing left for the doctors to do. We stayed steadfast when there was no hope in the future. We prayed. When others told me to have a drink or take medication to calm the nerves, I chose to cling to Holy Spirit and listened to His voice for direction.
My husband passed away on March 9, 2014. Seven months later, I received the news that our only son had passed away from an overdose in his apartment. Can you imagine my agony as a wife and mother? The pain I experienced after losing the love of my life AND my son? I literally could not stop crying, I used my tears to cry out to God and asked Him to take my tears of loss and turn them into tears for the lost. I wanted to see His plan in all this and He was so faithful to let me know He wasn’t out to hurt me, but wanted to use what I had been through to touch others.
As I was reading the Word, a story in 2 Kings, chapter 4 became alive to me. It’s the story about a widow and what was left in her house after her husband died. She began to tell Elisha that she had nothing left since her husband was gone, but what she didn’t realize was there was something in the house. There was oil. I came to a point in my grief when I cried out to the Lord and said, “I have nothing left!” But He quickly reminded me that I was full of oil of the Holy Spirit. God gave me two beautiful daughters and two son-in-laws full of oil of the Holy Spirit. He left me with the ministry that Steve and I began together years ago. He left me with people who loved us. I had oil in my home and that’s what would help me overcome these tragic, life-altering events.
Life for many of us often is full of obstacles. Many times we are faced with obstacles in our families, our finances, our health and a host of other issues. I’ve learned over the years that I either can overcome my obstacles or my obstacles can overcome me.
Jesus said in John 16:33, “These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me you will have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” Jesus makes it very clear that in this world we will face difficulties. (NKJ)
Throughout my life I have faced many different obstacles and challenging situations. For example, growing up as a child and on into my teen years, life was a bit challenging. I never knew my biological dad and that created a void in my life. Whenever Father’s Day came around, I would feel very sad because I didn’t have a father to spend time with on that special day.
Also, not having a car while growing up and a constant lack of money was very discouraging to me at times. Our mode of transportation was Ben Franklin Transit and rides from friends and family members in their car.
I despised poverty growing up – and I still despise it today – because I know firsthand what it does to people’s lives. It is by the grace of God that I didn’t turn to drugs, alcohol or sexual activity to fill the void in my life. My faith in God and my relationship with him is what gave me the strength and the ability to overcome these obstacles.
I was very blessed to have godly men in my life as I grew up – men who were fathers figure to me. Their influence in my life has played a major part in who I am today. As a result of their mentoring, I kept my eyes on the Lord and realized that he was my source. Even though things were tight at times, God always seemed to provide for us.
As a teenager, I developed a daily habit of reading the Bible and spending time in prayer. This is where I got my strength to overcome the issues in my home life.
My involvement in my church also played a major part in my ability to face the challenges of life. The wisdom that I received from my leaders was priceless.
Now, and over the past 15 years in ministry, I have faced what appeared to be insurmountable difficulties ranging from people problems, personal problems, financial problems, health problems and family problems.
My commitment and devotion to the Lord and his faithfulness is the only reason why I haven’t lost my mind. I’ve also learned that problems have a way of bringing out the best or the worst in us. I have had the best and the worst brought out in me.
I know that some of you reading this article are facing what seem to be insurmountable difficulties. No matter how big or small your problems, I hope that my story has encouraged you to overcome your obstacles.
Wow. Just wow. What a story! Thanks for sharing it!
Great challenge for me is school. Between my cognitive delay and my Autism, school has been very difficult for me. Well, it had to be around the middle of freshman year of school and I was thinking about how I wanted go to college to do something with photography or working with children. But I was really struggling, because I wanted to be successful and go to college, but with school being so hard already for me how could I ever pass college? So what did I do, I prayed to Jesus Christ. I just talked to him. I was like, “God, you know what is the best for me and I know you have a plan for me so please give me a sign of what I should do.” I prayed that constantly and one day I realized that I don’t need college to go far in life. All I need to do is something that made me happy. I took photography classes at my school and my sister, Katya, and I started our own business called Puzzle Pieces Photography. We specialize in ‘special needs photography.’ Through this decision, God showed me how I can be a big help in other people’s lives because, since I have Autism and sensory stuff, I know first hand how people with those issues react. So I use my love for children and photography is a good way.
St. Gemma says…
“If you really want to love Jesus first learn to suffer because suffering teaches you to love.”
Justin Fatica (HANM) explains it this way, “God allows us pain to teach us to depend on Him. Those who have handicap,challenges and mountains to climb, give Jesus Christ the chance to be victorious, we’re not victims we are victorious with Jesus one person at a time. We will share memorable and powerful messages that Christ came, not for those who have it all together, but to take impossible situations make them possible.”
With all of the struggles I have faced, it helped me to love God even more than I did before. God lets me struggle and have to climb mountains to get to Him. When I can’t manage my struggles, I have learned to depend on him. One of the mountains that I have struggled with is, as I mentioned, whether I should go to college or not. God directed my decision.
When I get frustrated, I have to find a way out the problem. That is the same way I think of a real mountain. When you climb a mountain you may come upon a big rock and have to problem solve a way to get passed it to continue to the top. The top I am trying to get to is Heaven and I can’t go to Heaven if I don’t love God and work on my struggles. I learned that Jesus is my friend, so He will listen to what I have to say. He takes what I think are impossible situations and make them possible. Part of making them possible is working on them myself, but also remembering to for strength to continue, when I can’t take it.
The greatest challenge that I have faced with was the persecution of my family. The constant misunderstandings, and hurting words really broke my heart. But I remembered the paths of disciples Jesus taught in the Bible, no matter what I should fallow the Lord and I believed God would change and overturn everything. Now He has fulfilled his promises to me.