Written By Agnes Lee, Singapore
I sank into near depression after giving birth four years ago. My days were spent in tears of self-pity as I faced many issues on my own as a new mom, combined with misunderstandings with my husband and in-laws. My marriage was on the rocks. I had no joy. My life was a mess I could not get out of.
I never expected this mess when I got married. I had thought that things would be beautiful. If not for a mentor pointing me back to the Word of God, I would not have had the strength to reconcile with my husband and family. The words of God spoken to us are full of Spirit and life, and when we face trouble, there is no better place to run to except to the Word of God.
Having seen God’s Word work in my life, I want to share it with anyone else who has encountered difficulties in their lives. I find my own past experiences often make a good starting place for sharing God’s Word, and I especially want to share God’s good news with those who have regrets, those have suffered, and those struggling with anger.
1. Those with Regrets
Regrets trap us and prevent us from starting afresh and making things right. But the Bible tells us that we are new creations when we are in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). Because of the gospel, we are no longer slaves to regrets when we accept Christ, but we are able to move forward, to press on in our new identities and pursue salvation (Philippians 3:14).
I used to murmur about marrying the wrong man, but as I lived in Christ, I realized that murmuring such comments prevented my marriage from growing. In embracing Christ, I began working on my marriage and seeking maturity in Christ-likeness. I realized how God’s Word brings renewed life and purpose to regretful people.
I had the opportunity to share this with my colleague one day, while walking to the train station after work. I told her how God had used His Word to renew my mindset about my marriage, and that this freed me from past regrets. My colleague was encouraged by this and decided that she would do the same for some of her current regrets.
2. Those Who Have Suffered
People suffering from sickness, emotional or physical abuse, or hurt by the wrongdoings of others will not find solace in the world. The word of God is the only place where we can find a safe hiding place. God is a refuge in times of trouble, and He cares for those who trust in Him (Nahum 1:7).
I found solace in God’s Word when I was in the most trying times of my marriage. I embraced God as He assured me that all things happen for our good according to His purpose (Romans 8:28). Without knowledge of the gospel, I would have missed out on God’s purpose for me to know Him intimately through my struggles. I would have wasted in despair. But we do not waste our suffering when we know God.
During my unexpected marriage struggles, I prayed and waited upon the Lord, but at times He was silent and things only got worse. But even though I questioned God, He kept using His Word and my church family to remind me that He was in control. As I struggled in my marriage, I increasingly looked to God’s Word for comfort, and God turned my sorrows to joy and hope.
I took comfort in the fact that God can turn all harms for good (Genesis 50:20), and I had an opportunity to share my struggles and joys with a friend at church who was also struggling in her marriage. God used this to show her that her struggles could be an opportunity to mature in the faith, and that even in the midst of her difficulties, she can experience God’s love, blessings, power, and glory.
3. Those Struggling with Anger
Some of us become easily angry when things are not going our way, and we tend to react in our own unrighteous ways. I am especially short-fused. Whenever someone close to me offends me with words, I react with harsh words. This has led me to many quarrels and hurt relationships. Thankfully, the gospel guides our feet into the path of peace (Luke 1:79). With God’s Word, we can discern situations better and respond with peace.
We have God’s Word so that God’s joy may be in us and complete our joy (John 15:11). Joy should always be our motive of sharing the gospel, since we have such a joy and want to share it so that unbelievers around us can also learn to walk in the light and experience the joy of God.
I often share my struggles with unbelievers, as well as how God has been my refuge for each time of difficulty. Even when we are persecuted, instead of using harsh words or actions to attack the other party, we can learn to be still before the Lord. The more trouble comes, the more we should equip ourselves with God’s Word and pray unceasingly for strength (1 Thessalonians 5:17). Some people say that this is easier said than done. But instead of being angry and relying on our own unrighteous strength, we need to stay focused on the Lord, and watch Him deliver us out of every trouble.
When we share the gospel, we remember that salvation belongs only to the Lord and He will save whomever He wants to save. However, we must not give up sharing even when our efforts seem futile, as we simply do not know how God is working in each individual faith journey. Till today, I am still grateful that someone shared the gospel with me when my heart was far away from the Lord. God was faithful to me even when I was unfaithful. The person who shared the gospel with me answered the call of God and persevered to help me see the beauty of the gospel, and she never gave up sharing till I believed. He who calls us is faithful (1 Thessalonians 5:24).