This is where we walk out our hard. It’s absolutely beautiful and most people would love to spend a day or more in this place. It’s a destination location and I guess if you are choosing to go, it’s one thing. For us, it was a “have to.” We didn’t choose it. Our trips were not planned vacations. But they were planned . . . by God’s grace and provision.

Our son took this picture of us as we walked. We had no idea he was behind us capturing the moment . . . or even that the moment was something he wanted to remember and capture. But he did and it meant something to us. This was a very good day because the time was purposeful. It had meaning. These moments were savored, not taken for granted. The beauty surrounding us reminded us of how very good has been to us. Beauty in our messy places.

We’ve come so far in the past year and half from where we started.

When we made our first trip to Colorado, I had a heavy heart full of fear. I didn’t see it as beautiful. I only wanted to get through what we had to get through and then get out of that place. Honestly, I saw no beauty in my surroundings because of the fear and uncertainty that was threatening to overwhelm me.

But my righteous one will live by faith and if he shrinks back I will not be pleased with him. But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved. Hebrews 10:38-39

I had a choice to make. Live and find joy where I was, or wither away in self pity, fear and grief thus missing the unexpected goodness of God in a hard place. It’s funny how God gives us some of the best gifts in unexpected ways.

Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him. Hebrews 11:6

So, about three months into our challenging journey, we were back in Colorado for a hearing. However, by this point God had been working and I had decided that I was going to trust God to do what only He could do. I trusted that this “trial” was part of our story that He was writing. I also knew that He was with us and for us.

On that trip in October of 2019, we arrived at the airport in Denver early in the day. We had a meeting with an attorney that afternoon and a hearing the next day. What we also had was a few hours of freedom in city surrounded by mountains. The same mountains that scared me to death a few months earlier. But on this day, God challenged me to go LIVE….to go ENJOY His creation and EXPERIENCE refreshment in all that He has created.

On that day we decided to drive a little bit outside of Golden and enjoy some trails. We walked, talked and found life. Slowly, We were learning to live where God has placed us.

Yes, things were serious and hard. We had real concerns and deep burdens of our hearts. Things were not okay. By any means. But God still gave us refreshment and beauty in the midst of all these things. Our earthly concerns are not bigger than God. There is nothing we are going to face that His love and mercy will not surround us. What looks to the world like defeat is often they way He delivers and brings victory.

Even as I type this out God is revealing Truth to me and showing me more of how He’s been working through our hard circumstances. I pray that as you read through my thoughts you will find encouragement in the midst of whatever you are facing today.

You pray for a miracle and Life only gets harder.

For three years I prayed Lord, Go with us. Teach us your ways. Be glorified.

I sincerely prayed these things and my circumstances went from bad to crushing, but because of my prayers, I was prepared to stand. (I must add that we could not have stood without the people God placed in our lives that stood with us and prayed for us. That sustained us!)

Sometime things are so broken that only a miracle will change things. When I was praying for God to do what only He could do and fasting in prayer on behalf of loved one, I had no idea that God’s way would lead to face my greatest fears.

When we are facing circumstances that seem hopeless, it’s then we realize that unless God delivers us, we will not make it.

That’s exactly where He wants us. Desperate and dependent on Him. He so longs to be good to us and bless us. We have to learn to trust His ways. Often, they are so opposite of what we would have chosen. Our human ways and understanding are so limited because we can’t see very far in front of us and we are not able to do what God can do. Therefore, we are wise to learn to abide, obey and trust in the one who never fails and with Him, nothing is too hard.

Best of all, He loves us! So very much. He really does love us and desire relationship with us.

As we grow through these trying opportunities of refinement, learning to surrender and trust, we come to know intimately the love of God. What might look harsh from a human perspective is often the kindness of God. The sovereignty of God.

The goodness of God comes wrapped in things we don’t always understand at first. Things that could cause us to question God’s love and provision, if we didn’t know and trust His character and faithfulness. The world that doesn’t know God will question, accuse and blame. But not those who know God and trust His ways. We know He is faithful and good. If we will just do what His word says and WAIT ON HIM, We will see the goodness of God in the land of this living.

The world will question our circumstances and maybe even cause us some trouble….but stand firm, believing the One who has promised. He who has promised is faithful. If we will not give up and keep believing God, we will see His glory. He’s promised us that in His word.

He is not slow, but His timing doesn’t run on our timetable. He knows what will bring Him the most glory. And isn’t that what we all desire…

It’s not about our comfort.

It’s not about our reputation.

It’s not about our schedule.

We may be uncomfortable and talked about by people who don’t understand. We may be lonely for a time or seriously inconvienced. We may be swamped with the enemies of doubt, fear and insecurity.

God has promised to defeat the enemies your life if you will turn to Him and trust Him.

Greater is He who is in me than He who is in the world 1 John 4:4

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing Psalm 23:1.

For in the day of trouble He will keep me safe in His dwelling…..Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at His tabernacle will I sacrifice with shouts of joy, I will sing and make music to the Lord. Psalm 27:5, 8

Find beauty in your hard.

LIVE- Don’t hide. Don’t retreat from life. I say that because I have to fight the tendency to withdraw and hide. That’s my natural bent. But it’s not God’s way. He wants us to live and see His glory in our hard places. He want us to trust Him to provide and guide. He wants to work in our impossible. Those places will bring Him the greatest glory.

Wherever you are look for ways to live, invest in others and worship God right where God has you! I know it may be hard and painful for you right now, but God uses pain to bring about some really beautiful things in our lives.

You are there for a purpose!

My comfort in my suffering is this; Your promise preserves my life. Psalm 119:50

The cross was painful. The greatest pain, lonliness, and shame anyone could bear. Yet, look what that sacrifice gave us. Life Eternal in Christ. Adoption into the family of God through Jesus. Forgiveness of sins by His blood. Hope. Purpose. Salvation.

Great things came out of a situation that looked hopeless from a human perspective.

God can do great things in your life, too. It just might not look like you thought it would. But I promise it will be good.

So go find the good. Take the time to remember all that God has done for you.

And remember to be thankful….even for the hard things we are given.

I would love to hear how God is teaching you to be thankful for things you didn’t choose. How do you see Him working good from the challenges in your life? What have you learned about choosing praise over complaining when things go differently than you expected? Let me know what God is teaching you…we get encouragement as we share the journey!

With a grateful heart,

Monica and Chuck


2 thoughts

  1. Thank you Monica! That was soo good. Today I’ve been battling anxiety like crazy. God has brought me so far the last few years and then out of the blue I’ll have a day like today. I know He sent your words and pictures (His creation has healing power)!

    Liked by 1 person

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