so we do not lose heart.

these last few days have been painful. a close friend decided to take an indefinite hiatus from our friend group and do life alone for a while, and it’s been hard. really, really hard. i’ve been struggling with feelings of hurt, betrayal, anger, sadness, and worry, to name just a few. i was fighting those feelings, because I knew they were bad and wrong and that I needed to just trust the Lord and give everything to Him.
but then Jesus reminded me of something, in that still, small voice He loves to use. He said, “Beloved, I felt those feelings too. I felt righteous anger; I was distressed, sorrowful, grieved, and in agony of spirit. I was left completely alone, bearing the weight of the entire world and all of its sin. My very Father turned away and forsook Me. Judas betrayed Me. Peter denied Me. all the people who loved Me the most left Me and ran away. but, Beloved, I died for them anyway. I saved them anyway. I love them anyway.

it’s not wrong to feel emotion in a difficult situation. Jesus did too. He knew what it was like to be fully and perfectly God, while at the same time being fully human and feeling everything that comes along with that. and yet-and yet! He didn’t let those feelings determine His actions or His reactions to the situations He was in. He had a divine and perfect plan, formed before the creation of the world, and no feeling or emotion or experience would change that.
it’s not about the emotions we feel; it’s about how we act despite them.

but, Lord, i’m upset. love anyway.
but, Lord, this hurts. forgive anyway.
but, Lord, i’m worried. trust me anyway.
but, Lord, this is hard. persevere anyway.

when life gets hard, when it hurts, when we can’t do it anymore, do we give up? do we lash out in anger at the hurt of betrayal? what if we are given trials to teach us, to help us grow closer to God, to make us trust Him? what if the blessing can only come through the pain - what then? do we forget what we know is true?
or do we remember that He is with us, and He is for us.
He will not forsake us.
He has been where we are and felt what we feel.
He loves us, He loves us, He loves us.
so we do not lose heart.