March 13, 2018
"... the LORD restored his fortunes. In fact, the LORD gave him twice as much as before!" Job 42:10b (NLT)
In a short period of time, and due to circumstances beyond my control, life changed dramatically.
As a result, the financial situation for my three children and me went from secure and life-giving to unsecure, unpredictable and insufficient to sustain even our basic needs. Desperate fears of how to provide for my family pulled me into a pit of fear and despair.
But one night I had a dream, and all that changed.
In this dream, I was slumped over. Tears pouring down my face. Sobbing out loud. Rubbing my eyes. Completely broken and spent. My waking emotions playing out in my sleeping subconscious. Then I noticed a figure slowly entering the room. Yet I wasn't alarmed; in fact, I felt totally at peace.
Rather than fear, a strange sense of calm and safety washed over me. I immediately knew in my spirit it was Jesus. He spoke softly and gently with a deep, yet tender, and loving voice: "Why didn't you come to Me earlier? I will restore all that has been lost and broken."
Hearing His voice startled me into consciousness, and I abruptly awoke - fully believing I'd experienced a divine encounter with my heavenly Father. His words kept echoing over and over in my mind, "I will restore all that has been lost and broken." Words I had longed to hear. Words that reaffirmed He saw me and was watching over me. Words that gave me great hope and reassured me He not only had the power to restore all that had been taken from my life, but indeed He had plans for it.
But what about hearing Jesus whisper, "Why didn't you come to Me sooner?"
This was perplexing, because I honestly believed I had come to Him. A million, gazillion times in fact. However, what I had not brought to Him was my total surrender and trust. Instead of surrendering my problems to Him, I just told Him about them constantly then continued trying to solve them on my own.
Rather than trusting for miraculous provision, I fretted and worried whether He would come through or not. I continually felt crushed and hopeless under countless adversities - much like Job in the Bible when he faced great loss and calamity.
In one day, Job lost his 10 children along with all his possessions and wealth. Shortly after, he was afflicted with a horrible skin disease. (Read chapters 1-2 in the book of Job to get the full story.)
Job didn't understand why he had to suffer so much. So, throughout the book of Job, we see him expressing heartache and anger at the pain and suffering God was allowing. We also see evidence of his impatience regarding how long it was taking God to bring about restoration.
Yet through it all - and despite his human emotions - Job never doubted that full surrender and trust was necessary. In Job 1:21b he even says, "The LORD gave me what I had, and the LORD has taken it away. Praise the name of the LORD!" Despite his suffering, he trusted God's will for his life and continued to praise Him. As a result, not only did Job's faith soar, but his life did as well.
Eventually in Job 42, we read how God blessed Job and his faithfulness in every way. Today's key verse, Job 42:10b, says, "... the LORD restored his fortunes. In fact, the LORD gave him twice as much as before!"God gave Job a double portion of all he'd lost, restored his marriage and many relationships, gave him a new household of children and allowed him to live happily to a ripe old age.
Whether it's our hearts, finances, relationships or lives that need mending, God always has a plan to heal and restore. Although I don't know God's exact plans for my future, I do know He is good, and I fully believe restoring my heart and my life are on His holy to-do list.
Total surrender and faithfulness will always open the door for God's restoration to begin.
Dear Jesus, You know my deepest worries and hurts and the areas where I desperately long for healing and restoration. Today I fully surrender those to You, and I ask You to help me have a joyous, expectant faith as I wait for You to move. I commit to trust You, Your ways, Your plans and Your timing from this day forward. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Jeremiah 29:11, "‘For I know the plans I have for you,' says the LORD. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.'" (NLT)
If life's adversities have made you feel hopeless, get a fresh dose of encouragement in Tracie Miles' latest book, Unsinkable Faith.
Tracie's newest book, Love Life Again: Finding Joy When Life is Hard, releases August 1, 2018. Subscribe to her blog to stay updated about when you can pre-order the book and get all the freebies in just a few short months! Stop by today for examples of God's provision and restoration in her life, and get three tips for learning to trust God in the hard times.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
How might my attitude change if I began trusting that God had plans to provide and restore what's broken in my life?
List the greatest things in need of restoration in your life today. Express your trust in God each day as you expectantly wait on Him to meet these needs.
© 2018 by Tracie Miles. All rights reserved.