At times the battles of life loom large. We feel defenseless. Evil, darkness lurk at every turn. Burdens weigh heavy on our shoulders. Others we know and love stumble beneath their loads. Where is the Light, when will breaks come?

People I know and care deeply about struggle under the weight of burdens not their own. Darkness pervades hearts, light only dimly filters through.

Pain robs others, leaving destruction in its wake. The winter of life can be daunting, just as winter continues to hold parts of the world in its grip.

Snow and ice wreaking havoc on roadways. Storms continuing to roll in, wind destroying homes and lives. Widespread burdens, no fault of the region’s inhabitants.

Spring seems far away, if not impossible

Yet it always comes, as it does for each of us, whether in this life or in eternity. Beauty will surround us. God will be ever present.

Death erased, there will be no more pain, no more tears, no more suffering.

For some healing, restoration and wholeness will come in this life.

As in the world around us, storms pass, droughts come to an end, flood waters recede. Life returns.

Winter gives way to spring . . . .

Colors begin to emerge, gradually erasing the grays of winter. Tree branches begin to bud sprouting myriad shades of green, though for some trees, leaves don’t come first.

Along a county highway in North Carolina, white flowering dogwood trees litter yards, fields, forests, towns, roadways. A mesmerizing sight. Beauty personified. By legend, the hope of resurrection blossoming against the backdrop of larger still hibernating trees. By sight, a picture of God’s great grace and provision in the midst of deadness.

God himself has said, “I will never leave you, nor will I ever forsake you.” So {that} we may boldly say: “the Lord is my helper; I will not fear . . . .” Hebrews 12:5-6

Even when life’s battles seem overwhelming. Even when spiritual attacks filter in unchecked as the enemy of our souls is constantly on the prowl, seeking to wear us down and infiltrate the foundations of our faith.

Especially in those places in us where the enemy has had control for years. Places in our world where Christ asks us His followers to go, to intercede, to love. Hard places where Christ asks His people to go, and to stay. Followers through whom God’s love is evidenced and Jesus is proclaimed.

Imperceptibly at first, change creeps into hearts, lives begin to turn around . . . .

And what happens? Satan is provoked. Darkness begins to bear down, threatening to reclaim and re-destroy. Trials continue, no end in sight.

And yet . . . greater is He who is in us than he who is in the world. I John 4:4

Greater is the One who calls us into life, into the world, into the suffering of others. Greater is this One who lights our way. Strengthens us when we falter. Picks us up when we become weary. Reminds us He is the God of the impossible when we struggle to believe lasting change will ever occur.

Greater is our God: the One who asks us to go, to walk alongside others, to live out His mercy, to stand in His power.

Greater is the God who commands us to believe who He says He is, and let go of who we think we are. To admit our weaknesses and to stand in God’s faithfulness and power.

Greater is the God who asks us to: Be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, {so that we} may be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. Ephesians 6:10-11

So that we may maintain an unwavering belief that God is who God says He is. Hold onto an unwavering faith in God’s promise to be with us on all of our days and ultimately, to defeat our enemies. Sustain an unwavering trust in Jesus, our Savior in whose Name we go into the world

Abraham believed in the LORD . . . with respect to the promise of God, he did not waver in unbelief, but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God, being fully convinced that what God had promised God was also able to perform. Gen 15:6  Rom 4:20-21

Unwavering belief . . . unwavering faith . . . unwavering trust . . .