I can’t wait to return to the blog next week with some “listen” lessons that I’m dying to share with you, but this week, I’d like to introduce you to my sweet friend, Lauren Gaskill. She’s a young woman setting the world on fire for Jesus. Because we live in the same area, I’ve been privileged to become her friend, and I’m cheering wildly as she releases her first book Into the Deep: Diving Into a Life of Courageous Faith.
Please welcome Lauren today as she shares some rich encouragement with us!
The stage lights dimmed and the music faded as I stood in the center of the room, unable to process the feelings rising up from deep within me.
I should have felt overjoyed, but instead I only felt overwhelmed — unsure if I could keep myself afloat in the choppy waters following Jesus had led me to.
God, I don’t think I have it in me to keep doing what you’ve called me to do. Jesus, help me. I prayed.
Have you ever prayed a similar prayer?
When life feels heavy and we feel like giving up, we have two options: We can sink into despair, or we ask Jesus to help us overcome the waves as we exercise the three Ps of a deep faith:
1. Rest in His Promises
Faith starts with choosing to believe and trust God, but it doesn’t stop there. Once we reach out to God in faith and surrender our lives to Him, we have to bathe ourselves in His promises as the ancients of faith did. Just as we bathe our bodies to keep ourselves healthy, so we must bathe our minds with God’s promises to keep our souls healthy.
The Bible is full of hundreds of promises, but here are the top ten promises that have helped me most in my faith journey, both after my first faith crisis and in the many battles I’ve faced since then. If your faith needs to be strengthened today, take courage in knowing these promises are just as true for you as they are for me. God’s promises are not exclusive to certain people or groups; they are true for all of us!
2. Ask for Provision
Remembering God’s provision is one of the most important things we can do for our faith. Here’s why: When our faith is shaken and we’re in a high-sea battle, it’s extremely comforting to know that our needs are going to be taken care of. Fear might rear its ugly head for a moment, and we might not have a clue how we are going to make it to the other side of the trial; but when we trust God to meet our needs no matter what, that changes everything.
God has promised provision for every torrent and trial (see Philippians 4:19).
That medical bill you don’t know how you are going to pay; that to-do list that you feel like you don’t have time for; that depressive episode you don’t know if you’re going to make it out of alive—God promises to meet every single need along the way. If we know this to be true, then in faith we can turn to God and praise Him as we await the provision. We can live expectantly with great hope as we recall all of the ways in which God has provided for our needs in the past.
The same God who met your needs and rescued you from sinking yesterday, last year, or many years ago is the same God who will continue to meet your needs today and for the rest of eternity. Although we don’t always know what God’s provision is going to look like, we can trust Him to fill us with His living water and give us our daily bread when we turn to Him.
3. Resolve to Persevere
As a child I was raised to stay the course, live tenaciously, and never give up. When I look at my bloodline, there’s no denying these traits are what set our family apart. For us, the term “hardy” goes beyond just having a strong last name. It’s a mindset—a way of life that has enabled us to overcome and keep the faith. Though I changed my last name when Alex and I married, these persistent attributes remain strong in me. In the words of my father, “You can take the Hardy out of the name, but you can’t take the Hardy out of the girl.”
In the same way, we have a biblical bloodline that helps us persevere when our faith is tested. You see, you and I belong to the family of Jesus, the most perseverant person to walk this earth. He persevered to death on a cross in order to accomplish God’s will and set us free, and we too can persevere in faith when we remember all Christ suffered and endured on our behalf.
Do you feel like giving up today? Are you feeling overwhelmed by life’s circumstances or what God has called you to do? Rest in His promises. Ask for provision. And resolve to persevere.
Lauren Gaskill is an author, speaker and founder of She Found Joy. She has just released her first book, Into the Deep: Diving Into a Life of Courageous Faith. Diagnosed with an incurable genetic disorder (Hypermobile Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome), Lauren is passionate about encouraging others to fight for faith and keep hope alive — no matter what. When she’s not writing, Lauren loves to cook, bake and go on hikes with her husband and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, who is affectionately named Reese after Lauren’s favorite candy, peanut butter cups.
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