When you make Jesus your Everything, things happen. Not always pleasant things. James said we should consider it pure joy whenever we face trials (James 1:2), but that is never easy. Jesus didn’t call us to an easy life. He called us to a changed life—one marked by death to ourselves and putting others’ needs and concerns before our own.
When we make a decision to be obedient to God, lay down our lives, and make Christ our focus, our Everything, we pick up a cross God makes just for us. The Christian life is not about being happy. It’s about being filled with joy in spite of our circumstances. It’s about choosing to be obedient because we love God. It’s about spending time in the presence of God when our flesh would rather do something else.
Sometimes we have great times. These are the days we cherish. The ones we are to remember during those times that aren’t so great. These are the days for which we yearn. Other times are hard. We trudge through these times desperate for them to end—reaching out to God in our distress. Days like these keep us humble. It’s not about us. We want so desperately to blame someone—God, Satan, our friends, our family. Anyone. But there is no one to blame—this is life. God never said we would not have trouble.
Today was supposed to be an exciting day for Mary DeMuth. Her newest book, Everything: What You Give and What You Gain to Become Like Jesus, is being released. I have been honored to serve on the Everything Launch Team alongside some very special Christian women. The kind that pray together, work together and hurt together. Today, as we were supposed to celebrate the publication of Everything, we are hurting for Mary and her youngest daughter.
Here is the story in Mary’s own words.
I hope you will join me in praying for Julia. She’s in pain and the doctors don’t know why. Is it a coincidence this happened just as Mary returned from a week in Haiti spreading the love of Christ to those who need Him and His provision and just days before the release of a book that will bring many to the feet of Christ to make Him their everything? Maybe so, probably not. Satan likes to kill and destroy. He will not win this battle. I have read Mary’s book. It is powerful. It is personal. It is Mary through and through. Her heart shines for Christ and this book is the proof.
Mary, take heart. God loves you. He is with you. Many are praying. Thank you for being obedient and a shining example of Christ.