Philippians 4:13 – I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
This is such a simple yet powerful verse in the Bible and has been one of my favorites since I was a girl growing up in a Godly environment with parents who taught me how to love and follow God in all aspects of my life. This does not mean that following God and being saved by His Grace makes everything easy, but instead it is a reminder that He will always be there to give you the strength to face the difficulties that life brings if you accept it.
Last year my Mom met Jesus face to face on March 27th and my Dad joined her on July 15th. We moved to the Orlando area at the end of April for a job that I thought would be the next successful step in my career but abruptly ended in October. My closely knit large family suddenly divided after my Dad’s death and went from being together for all holidays and special events as well as many fun family camping trips and pool parties to not speaking to each other at all – and I was left alone, in a new place, with no job and parents that recently passed away. Now this may sound like a story to evoke sympathy, but it is not, because the Grace of God carried me through this dark time and blessed me with a Godly husband who is an amazing pillar of strength and our 5 kids who have stood by me with constant support and love. God is always faithful if you keep your focus on Him and lean on the people that He has put in your life to show you His strength.
Now I could say that in 2020 everything has turned around and my loving family is back together and we aren’t facing a pandemic that no one can predict or understand its long-term impact, but unfortunately that isn’t the case. However, through God’s strength I have found ultimate peace by leaning on Him and following His plan for my life, which included working here at FUMC Sanford. The love and faithfulness that surrounds this church has given me blessings that I did not think I would experience again in my life. Through this ministry, which focuses on God’s grace, love and perseverance, I am reminded daily that I can conquer any difficulties that will come and experience the true joy of His blessings as long as I keep my focus on Him and not the storms around me. No matter what you are going through, God will always find ways to strengthen you! Just keep your eyes on Him and don’t focus on the negative because God has something so much better in store for you, and His strength (either directly or through others around you) will carry you through the dark times, I promise!