Challenges make life difficult, but overcoming them makes life meaningful. In this episode, Ruth Kang joins the pod squad to talk about the refreshing empowerment we can find through God's spirit to overcome life's challenges.
About the Speaker:
Ruth Kang was born in the Philippines and moved to Canada when she was 15 years old. She became a disciple of Jesus Christ in 1995 while attending the University of Toronto. She began serving in the full time ministry in 1999 and was married to Mark Kang in 2000. They have 3 wonderful boys with one about to go to college. Together they have led ministries in Toronto, Indiana, Wisconsin; and, they are currently leading the Detroit Church of Christ. Ruth loves going for nature walks, yoga, volleyball, card games and making things beautiful!
Everyone faces challenges — some more traumatic than others — but hardships none the less
• Question: How do we respond when we are hit hard? Where do our hearts and minds go when challenges come?
We can become prisoners to ourselves and the past. In the words of the apostle Paul in the book of Romans: “I’ve tried everything and nothing helped. I was at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me?”
Mind you this thinking is so pervasive - I have to constantly tether myself to what is true — about me and how God feels and thinks about me.
John 11- Mary and Martha’s story when their brother Lazarus died.
These two women lost their big brother who was their leader, protector and provider.
What can we learn from them?
Point #1 — Pour Out Your Heart to Jesus
We often equate hardships with Hardships = Being Unloved (or other lies) But this is not true John 11:4
When we don’t take time to talk over our issues with God we tend to conclude that God somehow forgot about us or that we don’t matter to Him.
But we see here that Jesus welcomes us as we are — even as we misinterpret him and our lives.
It’s okay to wrestle with your thoughts Growth starts when we face what’s on our hearts and minds—
And we must be careful to bring them to Jesus and not to false “gods” - Like food or Netflix.
Q. What thoughts/feelings are simmering in your life that you think are too much to expose? Too difficult to dive into? Maybe it’s time to go to Jesus with whatever that is for you.
Point #2 — Anchor Yourself in Christ - your perspective matters
The waves and winds will come — especially in the next few months. You need to anticipate this — be aware of your thoughts and emotions
We must beware of this — Trials can change the way we feel about God. So anchor yourself in what is true.
Q. What truths can we hold on to during hard times?
Point # 3 — Look for God in the challenges
Friends, God is waiting to be with you in those hard places — but you must invite him and look for him. He wants to show you his love.
The world may be going crazy - we don’t have to. God is our hope. God is Defining himself to you
Practical — Journal, pray through your feelings and thoughts, confide in trusted and helpful friends; take time to listen to God
There is a choice — we can overcome. The greater the hardships, the more we need to pour out ourselves to Jesus; The more we must anchor ourselves in Christ and his words, and lastly, we must look for God in these challenging places.
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