Posts

Tough Times Never Last, but Tough People Do

It’s been a tough week in Bossier City, Louisiana, where I live. Life-threatening storms swept through our community with 20 inches of rain over a two-day period and flooding that left many families homeless.

flooding

School dismissed for three days while displaced families from mandatory evacuations of heavily-populated neighborhoods sent families in 3500 homes away from the comfort of their usual surroundings.

As I thought about friends coping with the devastation this morning, I reflected on Robert Schuller’s book, Tough Times Never Last, but Tough People Do, that I read many years ago. It is a tough time for a lot of people right now.

But there is always hope for better days. Within a few hours of hearing about yet another young family who lost everything in the flood, I learned that Samaritan’s Purse was headed to LA for rescue relief. What a blessing to read their plans to help:

“Our teams bring in equipment and as soon as the water recedes, they roll up their sleeves to help flooded families get the mud out of their homes, sort through water-damaged personal belongings, and pull out damaged sheetrock, flooring, and insulation. Our Billy Graham Rapid Response Team Chaplains will be alongside to pray with and encourage flood victims.”

Samaratan's Purse

Sometimes in the midst of our challenges, it feels like there is no hope. But tough-minded people are created in the midst of tough circumstances if we don’t give up.

Maybe you’re in a tough season right now as a stepparent.

Perhaps you feel invisible in your role as a stepmom and no one notices the constant sacrifices you make.

Maybe you face another day of rejection from your stepson.

Maybe your spouse refuses to support your stepparenting efforts.

Perhaps the biological parent in the other home undermines the relationships you seek you build.

Read more

Looking for Hope on Your Stepfamily Journey?

I helped with a church service at a poverty-stricken trailer park yesterday. As I spoke with those who lived there, I saw brokenness in every family. Persons affected by addiction, family members struggling with broken relationships, elderly with debilitating health issue, and others wondering where their next meal would come from.

But if you looked in their eyes, you saw glimpses of hope. That’s why they had come.They wanted to experience the Hope we find through  Jesus Christ. They worshiped with authentic hearts as they connected with the One who offered them hope.

 

 

Are you looking for hope on your stepfamily journey? Are you trying to find comfort through your spouse, your friends, or your stepchildren? You might find glimmers of hope through relationships, but you will also find hurt and disappointment.

I have no doubt if you’ve lived in a stepfamily long, you’ve experienced  rejection,  sadness, anger and all kinds of pain.

True hope can only be found when we surrender to a relationship with Christ and choose to walk with Him daily.  It’s not glamorous. But it’s satisfying. It offers an inward peace that nothing else can.

The stepfamily journey creates struggles of many kinds, particularly in the beginning. The challenges feel hopeless some days. But with God’s help we can trudge through our difficulties, trusting Him to direct our steps.

In  her book, Forgiving God, Carla McClafferty describes her struggle to find hope again after suddenly losing her fourteen-month-old son.  “God taught me I had to depend on him daily. … God didn’t give me today the strength to face tomorrow. I had to depend on him one day at a time. ”

Carla faced the reality of not understanding why God allowed the death of her son. “I would not know or understand why God allowed Corey to die. Somehow, when I accepted the fact that I would never know, I was able to stop searching for the answer.”

Carla acknowledged God’s sovereignty in her circumstances. “In His divine authority, God doesn’t always answer our prayers the way we want Him to. Sometimes, God doesn’t change our circumstances, God changes us in our circumstances.”

If you’re looking for hope on your stepfamily journey, I pray you look toward Jesus. You may not find all the answers to your questions, but you can find unending hope and strength for your journey as you walk with Him daily.

“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted, and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:18

Where do you find hope on your stepfamily journey?