Young man hand reaching for the mountains during sunset and beautiful landscape

Breaking Out of Struggle – Pt. 2

Helping Others When You’re in Need

Continuing from the last article, I mentioned in January 2016, worry begun to set in as I wondered how I would have all the money I needed by October of that year. I discovered that at the rate I was saving, it still wouldn’t be enough to meet our budget because estimates were changing, venues were not open, and certain services needed for our wedding weren’t yet quoted due to various delays and constraints. It was highly likely expenses would exceed our budget. The thought came, “Did I hear you correctly, God? I did everything I think you asked me to do, but it doesn’t look like I’ll have enough.” I also wondered if I should get a second job as I had done that before. The more I prayed about the latter, the Holy Spirit reminded me of the below scripture, which became my anchor when I had to re-establish trust in God’s word and His promises.  

Light arises in the darkness for the upright; he is gracious and compassionate and righteous (upright—in right standing with God). 
Psalm 112:4 

I told myself to trust in God and not to worry, but to be completely honest, I needed the light to start shining on me soon so my needs could get met! “How are we going to get more money, God? There is only so much I can save and so many ways I can cut costs,” I thought to myself. Also at the time, I was shopping for my wife’s engagement ring. The prices at jewelry stores intimidated me, but I also didn’t find a ring that was special enough to give my wife. All of these thoughts were exhausting and I decided to take a break from thinking about this wedding.  

Later one Friday morning, my mind became so consumed with spontaneous thoughts of a friend of mine that I wondered if he was okay and if physical harm had come upon him. I brushed it off thinking it was my imagination, but the thoughts only increased and I started to feel sad for my friend. I realized God was perhaps talking to me. Finally, I texted him and asked if what I had sensed was true or was it my imagination? He responded, “What you are feeling is true. God put me on your heart because I am in a horrible financial place. I am three months behind on rent and I have been supporting my family with credit cards.” As a result of a combination of decisions and business slowing down, he just wasn’t able to keep up. Hearing what he said, I knew God was asking me to help him. I said, “Well gosh Lord—Hello! I need help too!” It’s important to remember we can still be of help to others by giving our time and resources even when we are in a place of need. This example is communicated by the Apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians 8 :2-3, In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability.   

We are vessels of God and I realized that I had to take the focus off my “lack” and turn to helping a fellow brother in Christ. If you were to stop focusing on your circumstances for a day or more, do you think you would be able to invest your time or resources in helping someone else? I’m sure God would highlight someone to you. Take some time off of your issue and turn your heart toward serving someone.

We’ll pick up this story in the next article, but for now, let’s pray this prayer based on Philippians 2:13 and Psalm 32:8 everyday if needed.  

Oh Lord, I know you are faithful to Your Word, and I trust you completely. I ask You to let it be Your good pleasure to will and to work Your purposes in me. Please instruct me and teach me in the way I have to go to break out of struggle. I am willing to learn so counsel me with Your eye upon me and cause my thoughts to become agreeable to Your will. I will follow Your instructions. Amen.