By Kathleen Billings
I once heard the phrase “If God brings you to it, He will bring you through it.” I think of this often as I find myself immersed in various situations and circumstances in life with all different types of people. Living a life of faith is quite an adventure! God is always working through each situation, person and circumstance He brings to me.
Often situations that God allows in our lives involve very real struggle. There is comfort in knowing that if God in His wisdom allows the struggle, He will equip us with His strength.
What has God brought you to today ? Do you trust that He will bring you through it ?
The most comforting thought for me in times of struggle is knowing that God has a plan for my life. “…For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11-12). God’s plan for my life is perfect and I need to trust that—even if it means the possibility of great pain! Going through great pain in union with God’s grace, will in turn help form and mold great character.
“No pain—no gain!” If you want to “gain” great character, then allow Our Lord to mold you through your pain, through your struggles. Rely on His strength to carry you and his love to comfort you.
In every difficult circumstance and relationship that God brings to you, His grace is waiting to be grasped to equip you with His strength to bring you through it. God wants to use the crosses that He allows us to carry to fit us for the tasks that He calls us to do!
St. John Vianney said, “If we do not carry our crosses with joy, then they will be of no use to us.” Our Lord allows the crosses He in His wisdom asks us to carry. He desires for us to carry them with joy, knowing they are forming our interior life in His love.
God does not ask us to carry our crosses alone, though. His strength comes in many different forms. There is the interior peace and strength that comes through our own fervent prayer; there are the people, like Simon of Cyrene, that God puts in our lives to literally “help” us carry our cross, and then there are the friends and family that carry us through their prayers for us.
In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus himself presents to us the very real need for friends who support us in faith. He asked his disciples—his friends, to stay awake with him for one hour as he shed tears of blood and cried out to God in agony. His friends fell asleep and Jesus confronted them by saying, “…could you not stay awake with me one hour” (Matthew 26:40)?
Friends may fail us in our time of need, but God will always equip us with His strength in some form.
Fruitful Friday is a weekly column revisiting some of our favorite previously posted WINE columns.
We are excited to look back at the many years of wisdom shared by the amazing team of WINE Writers.
How has God’s strength been manifested in your life?
About the Author:
Kathleen Billings is married to her best friend, a mother of five beautiful blessings and three more souls in Heaven. She has a BA in theology from the Franciscan University of Steubenville. Together with her husband, Troy, they began and direct a vibrant parish based Marriage Ministry called BAM – Building Amazing Marriages. Kathleen has a personal blog entitled seasonsoftheheartandhome.com where she writes about living her faith, in every season, as a wife and mother amidst the ordinary moments each day that God wants to make extraordinary. She is a regular blogger on marriage for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Website and is also a contributing author to the book “Amazing Grace for Mothers.” Kathleen has been an active Catholic speaker for the past 20 years – speaking at days of recollection, retreats for women, retreats for married couples, evenings of reflection and women’s groups.