Tag Archive | life challenges

55 Bible Verses To Encourage Your Hurting Heart

Something I love about God is how He demonstrates in His Word a deep love and concern for those who grieve and hurt.

When I wrote my book, Getting Your Breath Back After Life Knocks It Out of You, I was amazed how many scriptures there were in the Bible for those who are grieving or going through life challenges. Studying these scriptures changed my life.

God truly cares about you – and deeply cares about each and every hurt and heartache you experience.

Please allow these Bible verses to bring your hurting heart the hope, comfort, and encouragement it needs. As you read each verse, allow God to hug your heart and love you back to life.💗

“For He has not despised nor scorned the suffering of the afflicted; Nor has He hidden His face from him; But when he cried to Him for help, He heard.” ~Psalms 22:24

“You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.” ~Psalm 56:8

“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” ~Psalm 34:18

“He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” ~Revelation 21:4

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” ~Romans 8:18

“This is my comfort in my affliction, that your promise gives me life.” ~Psalm 119:50

“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” ~Psalm 147:3

“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” ~Matthew 11:28-30

“…Singing, crowned with everlasting joy. Sorrow and mourning will disappear, and they will be filled with joy and gladness.” ~Isaiah 35:10

“So also you have sorrow now, but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you.” ~John 16:22

“He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned—every one—to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.” ~Isaiah 53:3-6

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” ~Matthew 5:4

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” ~John 14:27

“Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh.” ~Luke 6:21

“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” ~Psalm 73:26

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.” ~2 Timothy 4:7-8

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” ~Romans 15:13

“Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. And he said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” In all this Job did not sin or charge God with wrong.” ~Job 1:20-22

“Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.” ~1 Peter 5:6-7

“But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep. For this we declare to you by a word from the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.” ~1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

“Jesus wept.” ~John 11:35

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” ~Isaiah 41:10

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” ~Philippians 4:6-8

“You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.” ~Isaiah 26:3

“And the ransomed of the Lord shall return and come to Zion with singing; everlasting joy shall be upon their heads; they shall obtain gladness and joy, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.” ~Isaiah 51:11

“For the Lord will not cast off forever, but, though he cause grief, he will have compassion according to the abundance of his steadfast love; for he does not willingly afflict or grieve the children of men.” ~Lamentations 3:31-33

“Have mercy on me, Lord, for I am in distress. Tears blur my eyes. My body and soul are withering away. I am dying from grief; my years are shortened by sadness. Sin has drained my strength; I am wasting away from within. I am scorned by all my enemies and despised by my neighbors— even my friends are afraid to come near me. When they see me on the street, they run the other way. I am ignored as if I were dead, as if I were a broken pot. I have heard the many rumors about me…But I am trusting you, O Lord, saying, “You are my God!” My future is in your hands. Let your favor shine on your servant. In your unfailing love, rescue me. Don’t let me be disgraced, O Lord, for I call out to you for help…How great is the goodness you have stored up for those who fear you. You lavish it on those who come to you for protection, blessing them before the watching world. You hide them in the shelter of your presence, safe from those who conspire against them. You shelter them in your presence, far from accusing tongues. Praise the Lord, for he has shown me the wonders of his unfailing love…In panic I cried out, “I am cut off from the Lord!” But you heard my cry for mercy and answered my call for help. Love the Lord, all you godly ones! For the Lord protects those who are loyal to him, but he harshly punishes the arrogant. So be strong and courageous, all you who put your hope in the Lord!” ~Psalms 31:9-24

“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; to grant to those who mourn in Zion— to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit; that they may be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.” ~Isaiah 61:1-3

“Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.” ~James 1:12

“I cry out to the Lord; I plead for the Lord’s mercy. I pour out my complaints before him and tell him all my troubles. When I am overwhelmed, you alone know the way I should turn.” ~Psalms 142:1-3

“Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.” ~Psalm 30:5

“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” ~Romans 8:28

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.” ~John 14:1-4

“How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day? How long shall my enemy be exalted over me? Consider and answer me, O Lord my God; light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death, lest my enemy say, “I have prevailed over him,” lest my foes rejoice because I am shaken. But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.” ~Psalm 13:1-5

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” ~John 16:33

“But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” ~Isaiah 40:31

“But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. I give Egypt as your ransom, Cush and Seba in exchange for you. Because you are precious in my eyes, and honored, and I love you, I give men in return for you, peoples in exchange for your life. Fear not, for I am with you; I will bring your offspring from the east, and from the west I will gather you.” ~Isaiah 43:1-5

“For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.” ~2 Corinthians 7:10

“For I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, “Fear not, I am the one who helps you.”” ~Isaiah 41:13

“Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known.” ~Jeremiah 33:3

“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.” ~John 10:27-29

“A good name is better than precious ointment, and the day of death than the day of birth. It is better to go to the house of mourning than to go to the house of feasting, for this is the end of all mankind, and the living will lay it to heart.” ~Ecclesiastes 7:1-2

“He will swallow up death forever; and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces, and the reproach of his people he will take away from all the earth, for the Lord has spoken.” ~Isaiah 25:8

“One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple. For he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble; he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; he will lift me high upon a rock.” ~Psalm 27:4-5

“I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, the hopper, the destroyer, and the cutter, my great army, which I sent among you. “You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the Lord your God, who has dealt wondrously with you. And my people shall never again be put to shame.” ~Joel 2:25-26

“The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.” ~Psalm 9:9

“My soul melts away for sorrow; strengthen me according to your word!” ~Psalm 119:28

“For it is you who light my lamp; the Lord my God lightens my darkness.” ~Psalm 18:28

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” ~1 Peter 1:3-9

“Truly, truly, I say to you, you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice. You will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will turn into joy.” ~John 16:20

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” ~Jeremiah 29:11

“I can do all things through him who strengthens me.” ~Philippians 4:13

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” ~Proverbs 3:3-6

“Jesus looked at them and said, ‘With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.’” ~Mark 10:27

““For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.” ~John‬ ‭3:16-17‬ ‭

I hope these verses truly encouraged your heart! Always remember how much God loves you — He cares about you so very much and has great plans for your life! You are a treasure to God and He is faithful to help you through your heartache and grief. Trust in Him.💗

Take care,

Kim

©2021 Kim Niles/Grief Bites. All rights reserved.

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❤️Making peace with God: http://www.peacewithgod.net

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3. Grief Bites: A New Approach To Growing Through Grief https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/862-grief-bites

4. Grief Bites: Hope For The Holidays: https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/1964-grief-bites-hope-for-the-holidays

5. Experiencing Holidays With Jesus: Christmas: http://bible.com/r/3V5

6. Experiencing Holidays With Jesus: Happy New Year!: http://bible.com/r/3Zv

7. Valentine’s Day: Experiencing Holidays With Jesus: https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/14059-valentines-day-experiencing-holidays-with-jesus

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Delighting in God Through Trials~Part 1

Psalm 37:4,Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart”

Psalm 37:4. The Bible verse everyone wants to come true and loves to hear, yet few ever truly dive deep enough to receive the blessings and gifts promised from this special verse.

Sometimes, we lightheartedly want this verse to come true…we think of all of the wonderful things we would want if God would magically grant us the whimsical desires of our hearts. Other times, this verse becomes almost a “911” sort of verse…a verse we become intensely interested in while we are going through an emergency situation in life.

God truly cares about each and every situation we go through, and He truly cares about all of the desires of our hearts—the whimsical and fanciful, as well as the emergency and important desires we have. God greatly desires to fully bless His children, and He sincerely wants to lavish great gifts onto those who genuinely love Him and delight in Him. (Matthew 7:11, James 1:17)

This past year, I’ve been going through a very tough grief experience…the toughest one I’ve ever had to walk through. A grief experience so personal and heartbreaking, very few even know about it. I knew from the start of this particular journey that there wouldn’t be a “quick fix” available. Other than praying, I eventually found I wouldn’t have the ability to do anything about this specific grief experience at all. 

God has repeatedly asked me to trust Him, to wait, build my faith, wait some more, build my faith even deeper, continue to trust Him more, and to lay this grief experience completely at His feet—simply being still as God works completely in His timing. Waiting and being still are extremely hard…I’m a much better “doer” than a “waiter,” yet God has supplied me with a greater hope, trust, and faith than I have ever known or experienced.

It was not easy at first. This grief event has tested my faith more than any other experience I’ve ever been through…but it’s refined my faith and proven it to be more genuine than ever before. 

This grief experience is what brought me to seek the meaning of Psalm 37:4. For me, it’s been an utter desperation of pleading with God to give me the deepest desire of my heart.

I’ve been blessed to learn many rich spiritual lessons throughout the past year, and I want to encourage anyone who is going through an extremely challenging time to not give up. God is listening to your heart’s cries…He truly does care…He has a plan to see you through the challenging event you are facing! He is not going to abandon you! He hears you and He sees your heartache and tears…they are not in vain.

What hard life event are you going through today? Are you, like me, seeking God with all your heart for answers? Are you desperate to have your deepest heart’s desires realized and brought to life? Are you wanting to seek and delight in God but you’re not quite sure where to begin?
I’m going to share some of what I’ve learned this past year. I truly hope it helps and encourages many today.

When looking at Psalm 37:4, I wanted instant results for the situation. God had other plans…and I’m grateful He did. Had He simply given me the desire of my heart instantly, I would not have grown as much as I have this year. I would’ve missed out on priceless, authentic lessons that have greatly changed me.

Just to be clear, I’m not over here skipping through fields of daisies and cheesily saying, “I’m so thankful for rich spiritual lessons, and you should be, too!”…No, not. at. all. The situation I’m praying for is literally a matter of life and death, and MANY tears have been poured through numerous prayers…so if God would’ve answered it immediately, I would definitely have taken it! However, I’m a firm believer in if God allows me to go through it, I’m going to grow through it.

But, sometimes, God asks us to wait. He requests that we be completely still and trust Him. And waiting, trusting, and being still is HARD! Especially when it appears that nothing is happening. It becomes even harder when things look like they’re getting worse. But…this is the exact place we’d truly want to be if we knew all of the facts from God’s perspective. 

Allowing God to train us to see life, and challenges in life, through His perspective—an eternal perspective—is what makes the difference between growing in faith…or growing in doubt and bitterness. It’s what makes the difference between pressing forward in hope and faith…or giving up. It’s what makes the difference between trusting Him and growing closer to His heart…or rejecting Him. It is imperative to have, and keep, an eternal perspective when going through grief, trials, and life challenges. If you don’t, you begin to spiritually die.

It’s not always easy, though.

One day, a few months ago, I became very frustrated about the situation I am facing. In my frustration, because no change had been seen in the situation for over a year…despite fasting and praying…I began to nurse a little hopelessness and bitterness. Heart and gut wrenching thoughts popped into my mind…”This situation is not fair…I genuinely did nothing to deserve thiswhy am I having to walk through this? God, why are you not helping me…why aren’t you helping me when You could instantly heal and fix this?”

I stayed upset for a few days…then realized how wickedly ungrateful I was being.

As I was focusing on what all I felt God was not giving me…I failed to see and truly appreciate all God had given and was currently giving to me. 

It needs to be said: having questions does not make a person ungrateful…and wading through the waters of frustration or disappointment doesn’t mean a person is wicked, lacks faith, or that they are wrong. I knew my own personal heart, though, and it verged on being ungrateful and bitter. 

Some very convicting thoughts came to mind…How many of my heart’s desires had God already given to me throughout my life…and how many of my heart’s desires has God currently been giving to me that I had not even asked Him or thanked Him for? 

I felt God asking me to make a list of all I was grateful for. As I made the list, I effortlessly wrote down 157 blessings and gifts from God I was incredibly grateful for…not too shabby for the God I was accusing of not giving me my heart’s desires just days before. And of those 157 things, other than #1 being God, #2 being family, #3 being friends/neighbors, and #4 being church family, the remaining 153 items didn’t include all of the people I’ve gotten the incredible joy of knowing and enjoying in my lifetime…or the wonderful memories I had the privilege of making with them. Many of my truest heart’s desires have graciously and extravagantly already been given to me by my Father God! My heart broke as I thought of how I was tempted to be so upset with God…thinking He owed me more…all because one very important heart’s desire wasn’t being answered the way I wanted it to be.

How many times do we focus on the one or two things God has not given us, or the one or two people or things God has allowed to be taken away from us, yet we fail to see all of the good God has freely given to us…much of which we don’t deserve, we did not earn, and we may not have even asked Him for? 

I needed to repent because I needed to want a dynamic relationship with God as much, if not more, as I wanted the dynamics of the situation to change. The situation is dire, and is still extremely important to me…extremely…just my relationship with God is more vital—and I trust Him!

Instead of saying, “This situation is not fair…I genuinely did nothing to deserve this…why am I having to walk through this? God, why are you not helping me?”….I instead choose to say, “God, the amount You have willingly and graciously chosen to put up with from me—all of my sins, ungratefulness, idolatries, attitudes, shortcomings, mistakes and failures—throughout my lifetime is not fair…The amount of kindness and goodness You have freely given to me and blessed me with is not fair or deserved…I genuinely did nothing to deserve all of Your love, goodness, faithfulness, kindness, gifts, and favor…Thank You for all of the good in my life, God…I will trust You with the path You are allowing. Work it out in YOUR time, not mine…YOU are the truest treasure and YOU should be the deepest desire of my heart—over, above, and beyond my desire for You to intervene in the challenge I am facing…I will delight in You no matter what!”

That day changed everything. I began to focus more on desiring and delighting in God, instead of focusing on my situation.

It makes no humanly sense. Really, it doesn’t. But, through eyes of an eternal perspective, it makes perfect sense.

I realized through focusing on my life challenge, I had lost my primary focus on God. It made me think of Peter in the Bible (Matthew 14:22-36). Jesus had asked Peter to walk on the water to Him, through the treacherous waves, but Peter began to sink because he focused on the storm and took his focus off of the One who had control of the storm. Jesus could have easily just stopped the storm. No doubt about it. But, the focus was never to be about the storm; the focus was to trust Jesus, take His hand, and run into His arms, away from the storm.

Today, in your situation, are you focusing so much on the storm that you’re sinking? Have you lost your eternal perspective so that you are not able to see your Savior’s loving arms that are reached out to you?

It’s entirely way too easy to do. We’re all human, in need of God’s love, mercy, help and grace. I’m super grateful God keeps that in mind!

Maybe, as I did, you need to get alone with God and pour your heart out to Him. Cry your fiercest tears, share with Him all of the hurts, pain, fears, worries, needs, and concerns. Share with Him—right or wrong—all that you are feeling, so you can run through the storm you are facing into His arms.

He IS there in your storm, and He WILL catch you! He may ask you to walk to Him, then be still…trust Him…wait…and even wait some more…but He is not going to leave you. He is not going to fail you or fail your situation! When we genuinely trust Him and TRULY delight in Him, He begins to smooth away the rockiness of our waves.

But, first, we must learn to TRULY delight in God. 

Ask God to teach you to authentically delight in Him…asking Him to speak powerfully to your heart. If there’s sin in your life, ask Him for His grace to remove the sin and then, with His daily help, choose to sin no more and replace your sin with the fruits of His Spirit and His righteousness. If there’s extreme hurt and bitterness in your heart, ask Him for His grace to remove it…and ask Him to replace your hurts and bitterness with a softness of heart and genuine love. If there’s pride, or any other negative character quality or emotion, ask for forgiveness and give God full control of your life and situation. (Ezekiel 11:17-21)

Do whatever it takes, whatever is needed, so you truly are freed up spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically to delight in God and to love Him with all of your heart, mind, soul, and strength!

When it all comes down to it, God—and our relationship with Him—is far more important than anything and anyone. He is totally worth pursuing with all of our heart! And He truly rewards those who seek Him when their motives are pure and right. (Jeremiah 29:13, Psalm 14:2, Acts 17:27-28, Hebews 11:6, Matthew 6:33-34, 2 Chronicles 30:18-20, Deuteronomy 4:15-40, Ezekiel 36)

What an amazing, rich, incredible gift we each are allowed and given every single day! A gift so miraculous…so incredibly special, prized, and powerful! God has blessed us with the ability to choose to unwrap this amazing gift every single day…the extraordinary gift of a deep friendship with Him and the ability to talk to Him anywhere, anytime!

We have the ability to talk with God of the universe…the very One who formed and created the entire world and the stars…the One who lovingly hand knitted and created us and the people we love and cherish the most…the One who, through Him, everything came to be! The Creator of everything! God, of Heaven and earth, who is preparing a place in Heaven for us!

Why wouldn’t we want to talk to God and delight in Him most? Over and above all the people we know and love? Over and above our interests and the activities and hobbies we enjoy everyday? And…yes, even over, above, and beyond the situations that break our hearts and attempt to steal our joy and our focus on the One we should desire and love the most?

I’ve found, this past year, that the problem wasn’t God not answering my prayers or not giving me the desires of my heart…the problem is I failed to genuinely honor, love, and truly obey Him, and authentically delight in Him.

If you had asked me if I did these things before, I would’ve absolutely replied, “yes,”…yet, God has shown me “blind spots” in my life that I didn’t realize were there that have needed correcting. And, these blind spots kept me from fully delighting in God.

Today, what blind spots are keeping you from fully delighting in God? Are you willing to humble and get real with yourself and allow God to remove them?

As I was talking to God about everything, as well as my blind spots, I realized how much change was needed in my heart. I even went the extra step of asking those closest to me to share the blind spots they personally saw. I was serious about delighting in God and removing anything that prevented me from doing so. Warning: don’t ask those closest to you about your blind spots unless you truly want to hear uncomfortable truths. Your feelings will probably get hurt, too. Be prepared to take an open minded, honest look at your life with an expectation to humbly handle it in love and with a goal of truly wanting to change. 

As you seek to delight in God, be prepared for Him to weed out the garden of your heart. He wants your whole heart, and He genuinely cares what condition your heart is in. God will reveal all that is keeping you from truly delighting in Him…your idols: all of the people, things, possessions, activities, sins, hobbies, attitudes, thoughts, blind spots—everything. He desires your whole heart and He wants your heart to beat with health and life!

I think as we go to God and learn how to deeply and authentically delight in Him, we begin to care more about the desires of God’s heart…and we begin to ask Him, “What delights You? What are the greatest desires of Your heart?”

When we get to that point, and it truly is genuine, I believe God begins to work in miraculous ways…ways we’ve never seen or experienced ever before.

God brought me to this excellent passage of scripture. As you read this, please allow God to speak deeply into your heart.

Hebrews 12: 1-3, “Do you see what this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we’d better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls! 4-11 In this all-out match against sin, others have suffered far worse than you, to say nothing of what Jesus went through—all that bloodshed! So don’t feel sorry for yourselves. Or have you forgotten how good parents treat children, and that God regards you as his children?

My dear child, don’t shrug off God’s discipline,

    but don’t be crushed by it either.

It’s the child he loves that he disciplines;

    the child he embraces, he also corrects.

God is educating you; that’s why you must never drop out. He’s treating you as dear children. This trouble you’re in (or experiencing) isn’t punishment; it’s training, the normal experience of children. Only irresponsible parents leave children to fend for themselves. Would you prefer an irresponsible God? We respect our own parents for training and not spoiling us, so why not embrace God’s training so we can truly live? While we were children, our parents did what seemed best to them. But God is doing what is best for us, training us to live God’s holy best. At the time, discipline isn’t much fun. It always feels like it’s going against the grain. Later, of course, it pays off handsomely, for it’s the well-trained who find themselves mature in their relationship with God12-13 So don’t sit around on your hands! No more dragging your feet! Clear the path for long-distance runners so no one will trip and fall, so no one will step in a hole and sprain an ankle. Help each other out. And run for it! 14-17 Work at getting along with each other and with God. Otherwise you’ll never get so much as a glimpse of God. Make sure no one gets left out of God’s generosity. Keep a sharp eye out for weeds of bitter discontent. A thistle or two gone to seed can ruin a whole garden in no time. Watch out for the Esau syndrome: trading away God’s lifelong gift in order to satisfy a short-term appetite. You well know how Esau later regretted that impulsive act and wanted God’s blessing—but by then it was too late, tears or no tears. 18-21 Unlike your ancestors, you didn’t come to Mount Sinai—all that volcanic blaze and earthshaking rumble—to hear God speak. The earsplitting words and soul-shaking message terrified them and they begged him to stop. When they heard the words—“If an animal touches the Mountain, it’s as good as dead”—they were afraid to move. Even Moses was terrified. 22-24 No, that’s not your experience at all. You’ve come to Mount Zion, the city where the living God resides. The invisible Jerusalem is populated by throngs of festive angels and Christian citizens. It is the city where God is Judge, with judgments that make us just. You’ve come to Jesus, who presents us with a new covenant, a fresh charter from God. He is the Mediator of this covenant. The murder of Jesus, unlike Abel’s—a homicide that cried out for vengeance—became a proclamation of grace. 25-27 So don’t turn a deaf ear to these gracious words. If those who ignored earthly warnings didn’t get away with it, what will happen to us if we turn our backs on heavenly warnings? His voice that time shook the earth to its foundations; this time—he’s told us this quite plainly—he’ll also rock the heavens: “One last shaking, from top to bottom, stem to stern.” The phrase “one last shaking” means a thorough housecleaning, getting rid of all the historical and religious junk so that the unshakable essentials stand clear and uncluttered. 28-29 Do you see what we’ve got? An unshakable kingdom! And do you see how thankful we must be? Not only thankful, but brimming with worship, deeply reverent before God. For God is not an indifferent bystander. He’s actively cleaning house, torching all that needs to burn, and he won’t quit until it’s all cleansed. God himself is Fire!”

Through reading Hebrews 12, I realized it was a missing piece of the puzzle for how to truly begin to delight in God. I clearly was able to see how important it was to strip away anything that was keeping me from fully loving God…how important it is to allow Him to garden my heart…to burn away anything that is keeping me from running a clean and effective race for Him.

You may be thinking, “You have no idea what I’m going through…or the pain I’m drowning in…I’m at my wits’ end!”…

If you are drowning in the middle of the ocean and in the eye of the storm of a massive heartache or problem, please understand that usually is where God reveals the most treasure…and the very place where the strongest testimonies are in the making! Consider the following two passages of scripture:

Psalm‬ ‭107:23-32‬, “Some went out on the sea in ships; they were merchants on the mighty waters. They saw the works of the Lord, his wonderful deeds in the deep. For he spoke and stirred up a tempest that lifted high the waves. They mounted up to the heavens and went down to the depths; in their peril their courage melted away. They reeled and staggered like drunkards; they were at their wits’ end. Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress. He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed. They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven. Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind. Let them exalt him in the assembly of the people and praise him in the council of the elders.”

‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭43:2,When you pass through the waters, I will be with you…”

I hope all of the Bible verses and my transparency today was helpful and I hope your heart has been encouraged.

So very sorry for the longer than normal blog post; I was going to break it up into a 3-day series, but I wanted to help those who are desperate for help now.

Ask God, right now, to help you in whatever grief journey or life challenge you are facing. Ask Him for His grace to fall more deeply in love with Him, to see your situation from His perspective, and for good gifts of His choosing. He never fails His children and He can make great good come from any situation. It may not look anything like what we had originally wanted or desired in our own hearts, but with God’s power, it could be more than we could ever ask, think or imagine!

May God ABUNDANTLY bless you as you seek His heart and learn how to delight extravagantly in Him!

Always remember: Psalm‬ ‭34:18-19‬,The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. The righteous person may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all”

A few more scriptures to encourage you. Long, but well worth the read, as it ties everything together:

Hebrews 12:1-2, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.”

Philippians‬ ‭3:8-14,Yes, furthermore, I count everything as loss compared to the possession of the priceless privilege (the overwhelming preciousness, the surpassing worth, and supreme advantage) of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord and of progressively becoming more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him [of perceiving and recognizing and understanding Him more fully and clearly]. For His sake I have lost everything and consider it all to be mere rubbish, in order that I may win (gain) Christ (the Anointed One), And that I may [actually] be found and known as in Him, not having any [self-achieved] righteousness that can be called my own, based on my obedience to the Law’s demands (ritualistic uprightness and supposed right standing with God thus acquired), but possessing that [genuine righteousness] which comes through faith in Christ (the Anointed One), the [truly] right standing with God, which comes from God by [saving] faith. [For my determined purpose is] that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His Person more strongly and more clearly], and that I may in that same way come to know the power outflowing from His resurrection [which it exerts over believers], and that I may so share His sufferings as to be continually transformed [in spirit into His likeness even] to His death, [in the hope] That if possible I may attain to the [spiritual and moral] resurrection [that lifts me] out from among the dead [even while in the body]. Not that I have now attained [this ideal], or have already been made perfect, but I press on to lay hold of (grasp) and make my own, that for which Christ Jesus (the Messiah) has laid hold of me and made me His own. I do not consider, brethren, that I have captured and made it my own [yet]; but one thing I do [it is my one aspiration]: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the [supreme and heavenly] prize to which God in Christ Jesus is calling us upward.

Friends, press on toward the goal and prize Christ has for you. Seek Him with all of your heart. If you feel you are drowning in your situation, remember that God has not brought you there to drown you…He has allowed you to be placed there to teach you treasures in the deep and to cleanse and renew your heart! Learn to fully delight yourself in God and His amazing, beautiful heart!

Isaiah 45:3, “And I will give you treasures of darkness–secret riches. I will do this so you may know that I am the LORD, the God of Israel, the one who calls you by name.”

I plan to blog about some special ways God has taught me to delight in Him. I hope this future post will be helpful and encouraging as well!

Gratitude & many blessings,

❤️Kim

©2015 by Kim Niles. All rights reserved.

If what you read was helpful, please feel free to share it❤️

For more encouragement:

Kim’s blog: http://www.griefbites.com

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FREE YouVersion reading plans:
1. Grief Bites: Hope For The Holidays: https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/1964-grief-bites-hope-for-the-holidays

2. Grief Bites: Finding Treasure In Hardships: https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/912-grief-bites-finding-treasure-in-hardships 

3. Grief Bites: Doubt Revealed: https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/954-grief-bites-doubt-revealed 

4. Grief Bites: A New Approach To Growing Through Grief https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/862-grief-bites 

Kim’s book: Getting Your Breath Back After Life Knocks It Out of You Click here for book