Focus on the big picture

A devotion about focusing on God during difficult times

“What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.” –James 4:14

It has been challenging for me to remain “faith focused” during the pandemic. I have struggled, especially after our Monday prayer time with six international country directors, hearing weekly of all the pain and grief they are experiencing. 

On a recent call, I heard about several team members in Peru who have multiple family members hospitalized and sick at home with COVID-19. Currently, Peru has no available hospital beds, little available oxygen and hundreds of people are dying daily. 

Later, I received a text about a team member who lost her 57-year-old dad during the night after his oxygen level dropped to 60 and the doctor could not provide him an ICU bed and ventilator. An hour later, another text came of another team member’s dad who is in critical condition. 

Yes, my faith sometimes waivers as I hear about so much pain, suffering and grief.

How do you keep your faith stable during difficult times?

But I am reminded to keep my eyes on Jesus, the one who understands all too well about suffering, pain and grief. His death on the cross made eternal life possible for those who believe in him. 

Anticipating eternity helps me to accept the things that seem so unfair and understand the bigger picture – our time here on earth is but a moment, “a mist,” compared to eternity. 

When I focus on that bigger picture, I understand that all God permits now, he will redeem for our good (Romans 8:28). When I question “Why?” and don’t understand, I am comforted that God does and will fulfill his purpose so his name is glorified. One day, we will be in his presence for eternity where there will be no more suffering, no more pain, no more grief and everything will finally be just like he intended – perfect! 

To keep faith strong, focus on the promise of eternal life from Jesus Christ

When my faith waivers, I remind myself that this is temporary and refocus on the bigger picture of eternal life – the gift of God given to all who believe in his son, Jesus Christ. 

“They will be his people, and God himself will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” – Revelation 21:4

Written by Dexton Shores, senior executive director of international ministries for Buckner International.

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