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Chaplain's Corner

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Facing the Adversities of Life

4 Jun 2021 | Lt. j.g. Richard Griffin Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune

With so much going on in the last year, one may feel overwhelmed, perplexed, sad, frustrated, and even crushed by all that has happened. These feelings are found in the core of our spirit and can affect our ability to respond. There have been many times in my life that I have personally felt overwhelmed by what is occurring. Whether I was on deployment in Iraq or Afghanistan or was dealing with the death of my loved ones, the feeling of being crushed can be overwhelming. It is in those moments that I am reminded of a passage from 2 Corinthians 4:8-9, “We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed.” We can be affected by all manner of adversity and still find strength in God to overcome. Most often in the middle of facing adversity we feel alone. This is never true. While those that care for us and support us may not be present, there is One who is always present.

It is through the grace of God that we are able to find the power to press through the difficulties before us. 1 Peter 5:10 states, “May the God of all grace, who called us to his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.” God often uses our life difficulties to build us and make us stronger. It isn’t our own personal strength but close walk with God whose grace enables us to carry on.

In the story of Nehemiah, the people of Jerusalem were facing grave security and safety issues. They had no wall or way to protect themselves from enemies. Nehemiah felt so overwhelmed for his people that he wept. The next thing he did was reach for his source of strength by praying to God for direction and mercy that he may help his people. Nehemiah was given authority as governor and a responsibility to rebuild the wall. That began a series of difficult challenges from the people he ruled and from those who wished to see him crushed. He could have easily given up, yet Nehemiah instead looked to God for strength in the middle of adversity.

My encouragement for you is to face adversity in your life by looking to God in prayer so you may be enabled to prevail. Nehemiah in the end, against all odds, built the wall around Jerusalem, and the people and city flourished!  May your life be strengthened and blessed by the one who overcomes.

The Chaplain’s Corner covers everything faith related. Facts not attributed are purely the opinion of the writer.