Isaiah 46:3-4 (NLT) "Listen to me, all you who are left in Israel. I created you and have cared for you since before you were born. I will be your God throughout your lifetime until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for you. I will carry you along and save you.

1 Peter 5:6-7 (Amp) Therefore humble yourselves [demote, lower yourselves in your own estimation] under the mighty hand of God, that in due time He may exalt you, Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.

It was an exciting time for me. I recommitted my life to Christ. I was having great quiet time with the Father. I was growing and He gave me a promise for my future.

Ever since then it has been a dry walk in the desert and at times a living hell. It wasn't supposed to be like this. I thought this was my breakthrough time. I thought this was the “Promised Land”.

To put it nicely, I was wrong.

It landed up being the road to the “Promised Land”. A deserted dusty desert road that seemed to have no end. Always needing refreshing water and bread for energy. Having to rely on the Father for every provision. At times, it was day by day provision because of an empty bank account that resembled the road we were on. I was unemployed on and off for many years and had to live in the unfinished basements of others. One was mold infested that flooded in a rainstorm and the other we didn't have access to heat in the middle of winter. At one time, we didn't have a car because of an accident. We had to rely on the generosity of others until we could get our own car.

From there, it got worse. Much worse.

It's funny (not really) how God allows extreme situations to change our hearts and mindsets.

This scripture comes to life with internal passion when we realize what He is doing through the difficult circumstances; Romans 8:28 - "We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose."

Following Christ in not all fun and games. We are at war with a vicious enemy that hates you and God. And in this battle I had to come to a full, complete and unwavering belief that the God of all that is, absolutely loves me. In these difficult times, the enemy of my soul badgered me with the thought that God was angry with me because I just couldn't measure up to His standards. He tried to use this tactic because that is what he used on me before I started fully following Christ, and it worked. This was my biggest hindrance for years. It wasn't my sin or sin nature. It was not believing in the depth of God's love and grace for me.

This time it was different. The Spirit of God helped drive 1 Peter 5:6-7 into my spirit through all my sorrow, tears, and pain. Partly because of this, my perspective has changed. I am at war and the battleground of this war doesn't prove God is mad at me, it proves He loves me enough to trust me with the task of training. I must be trained for the battle to win.

But because of the nature of war there will be injuries. Some minor and some major. But Jesus came to heal us and make us victorious. But to be victorious we must take an active part in our healing. For me, it was to fully trust in His love in spite of the attacks from the enemy. I had to learn it was because He loves me the enemy wants to destroy me. Unknown to me, many times the Lord used the enemy’s attacks to strengthen me. It was almost like a reverse phycology. The enemy would attack and likely feel confident he had me in a position to lose, then the Spirit of God would remind me that He loves me and is preparing for the calling on my life. If He didn't love me, He wouldn't prepare me for battle. Knowing this gave me peace and the enemy hates it when we have peace in the midst of his attacks.

Remember, God could have let the world go and leave us to our own destruction. But because of His great love for you and all people, He sent a Savior to portray the depth of that love.

Where ever you are and whatever trials you face, the Father cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully and will carry you along and save you.

Don't give in and don't give up. His great love will carry you through.

Andy