God Sees the Bigger Picture| By Christna Stubbs

For the past two years, I have been waiting on God to intervene on my behalf in a particular situation. It has been an emotional journey walking through this process. I remember thinking during most of 2019 that if I could just overcome this giant, I could move on with my life and finally do what I knew God had called me to do. 

If what I was going through emotionally at the time was not enough, I fell ill and began to struggle physically. At this point, I had had enough. I had already been grappling with emotional turmoil over the past two years and now, on top of all of that, there came a physical battle that I had to fight in my body. On the outside, I appeared healthy to everyone, but everyday, I was in constant pain and discomfort, not understanding why I had to face something like this. 

In the midst of my emotional and physical pain, I constantly asked God the age old question: “Why?” “Why is this happening to me now God”? Why does it seem like I can’t catch a break? Why doesn’t my life make sense anymore? Why am I struggling with a health issue when I should be enjoying my youth?” 

My vision of the future that I once dreamt about was now a blurry mess! I could not see through the fog; my pain and suffering just felt too real. I would wake up every day feeling numb. The pain, the confusion, and the uncertainty was overwhelming. 

I remember one particular day in the midst of my pain, I had been asking God why He never allowed me to see what I had been praying for. I thought to myself, “It’s been two years God, why haven’t you intervened already?” Aren’t you supposed to answer the cries of your people? Aren’t you a good, good Father?” 

The prayer requests I had were all things that He had promised me, but it just seemed like it would NEVER happen. At that moment though, I felt the Holy Spirit speak gently to my heart. 

In the sweetest voice, I heard “If I had given you the breakthrough you prayed for, you would not be able to handle it”. 

You see, if God had given me what I had been praying for, it would have required me to move to the other side of the world. I would have endured my illness in a forgeign country, alone, away from my family. I knew within myself that it would have been much harder to walk through a season of sickness without the support of my family, and the recovery would have been much more gruelling. 

I believe without a shadow of a doubt that God already knew this. In His love and mercy, He held off from opening a door because He knew that I would not be ready for what was to come, no matter how ready I thought I was. 

I chose to share my story because I realize that oftentimes, we only see a mere speck on the painting of our lives. We are looking at a small stroke, and we try to make sense of it, when God already has a full view of the portrait. When we are walking through a season of delay or difficulty, it is easy for us to focus so closely on what is in front of us that we forget that God already knows our end from the beginning.We might only have a limited view and understanding of everything that takes place in our lives, but God sees everything. He sees the bigger picture, and we can trust that everything that He has planned for us will be good because He is a good Father. 

I pray that as you read my story, you can find comfort in this truth that God sees the bigger picture of your life. You may have been praying for something for years and because it has yet to happen, you have lost hope. Or, you may have expected your current circumstances to look a lot different than they do right now. Whatever it is that you are facing, remember that God sees everything. He already knows what is going to happen. He knows why you are where you are now, and He knows where you are going. I believe with all my heart that once we trust in Him, we can rest assured that the bigger picture that He is painting is much more beautiful than we can ever imagine. 

“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9 (NLT)

It Gets Better: A Letter to the Old Me| By Emily Lawson

Dear Old Me,

I see you. I feel your anxiousness. I feel your worry; how deep it goes in your chest. I know that your head tries to tell you that you need to lose that weight. I know it tells you that you are not as pretty as her. I know it tells you that you do not have the skills. 

I know it tells you that they do not care. 

And I also know it keeps those words on a repeat soundtrack at all hours. Day and night. 

I also know what you have been through. You have overcome so many things already. You’ve been to the darkest of days and back in your life.

Yet, that lonely feeling stands. It reminds you every day of the times you have failed and been failed by others. Your mind tells you that God has no idea where you are. You are one in millions. There is no way that He can feel the need to help you. 

But, honey, God sees you as ‘one in a million’. You are unique and perfect. He created the you that you are and cares enough to send His only son to die on a cross for YOU. God is so much greater than the thoughts that the devil puts in your head. 

My grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 (KJV)

That means YOUR weakness.

His strength is the PERFECT thing that comes from admitting the weakness you feel. 

Your significant other is not always available. Your best friend needs sleep, too. Your social media friends will not quite get it on the level you need.

Your mind is a dangerous prison, love.

Mentally: It holds you in a controlled environment and in some ways that provides comfort. You are in a place that is familiar, and you have grown used to the numbness. It is mostly in your control. But on bad days, you just need to reach a little further than it is letting you, and the chains around your neck dig a little deeper. That restraint makes you feel like you are never going to make it out alive. 

Physically: You are tired. And not an “Oh I couldn’t sleep last night” tired, but an “I can feel it in my bones, and it isn’t going to change” tired. You are tired of faking the smile for others. You are tired of trying so hard to be “normal”, and it is weighing down your shoulders and making it harder to get out of bed. 

You need help.

And asking for help does not mean that you have failed. It means that you have WON. It means that you have finally stepped back, let go of control, and held to the hand of Jesus to drag you out of the pit that your head has held you captive in all this time.

Now, listen to Him. 

Rebuke the devil from off your back. Tell him he has no place. Take hold of your Savior’s hand and let him break those chains. 

Get out there. Seek the help. Talk to the doctor. Take the medication. Get on the path that helps you be the best you. 

For your family. 

For yourself.

For Jesus.

Recovery is a road, but you have got a friend to walk down it with you. Through each step, He will place your foot. Each bump, He catches your arm. Trust in Him.  

It can and WILL get better. I am telling you from the other side.

Your mental health is so important, and you are worth every bit of effort. 

Never forget that. 

Love, New Me

Follow Emily’s Instagram @the_modest_wife and/or email her at modest.wife@gmail.com.