By Joe Salvo – Troy, Ohio
Recently, I hit the pause button and evaluated the worth of my life. I reflected on all God and his son Jesus have brought me through and asked, “Why me?”
I now have a different view of what it means to be a Christian.
I stand in awe that I am still alive. My latest trial was a second car crash that should have taken my life. I walked away from the accident and did not have a scratch on me, but the car was totaled.
My Life’s Meaning
This is the eighth time that God has intervened in my life when I was facing sure death. The incident made me think about the meaning of our lives. It made me deeply wonder whether or not my life has made enough of a difference.
Do I take the time to really show people that I love them? Do I take the opportunity to give more? Am I doing the will of my Father? Am I about His business or wasting the gifts He gave me on my own ambition?
These were some of the questions I’ve had. I’m humbled that I still have work to do. It has made me so overwhelmingly thankful that God has not just given me life but has protected me from the enemy time and time again.
Boxer Mike Tyson once said, “everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” Everyone is going through a battle, waging war against a storm that may seem unconquerable.
The battles are different for each of us, but God is a sure thing, and Jesus has already been where we are right now. He has gone before us and blazed a trail so that we can have the opportunity to press into the eternal and resist the ways of the flesh.
God will turn our mess into a message, Our trial into triumph, our battle into belief. The question is, will we let him?
“Rejoice always and delight in your faith; be unceasing and persistent in prayer; in every situation (no matter what the circumstances) be thankful and continually give thanks to God; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus. Do not quench [subdue, or be unresponsive to the working and guidance of ] the [Holy] Spirit.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-10 AMP
If I’m being real, in this season of life, it’s been harder for me to focus on being thankful. I’ve felt like I was in the ring with the devil and was taking hit after hit. I was focused on me and only what I wanted.
“God, why did this all happen?”
How do I juggle all the commitments I’ve made and honor my word?! How do I balance spending quality time with [my wife] Courtney, work, school, young adult fellowship, and having fun in life?
Just when I felt that my life was starting to get good and have balance… then there was a box of wrenches thrown into my gears.
I realized I was being short-sighted and was under the illusion that I was the one that had to take this on myself. I was not allowing God access, and I felt like I was being a failure to everyone.
It was very isolating, and I felt the sting of shame. My wife was working just as hard if not harder than me, and she was also handling the young adult fellowship.
I was on the struggle bus with a flat tire, but God is so good.
I cried out to him and said, “God, you put this on my heart. How can I do all this? Make this make sense. Give me patience and the strength to do your will, because right now your plan for me is as clear as mud.”
“Consider it nothing but you, my brothers and sisters, whenever you fall into various trials. Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]. And let endurance have its perfect result and do a thorough work, so that you may be perfect and completely developed [in your faith], lacking in nothing.
If any of you lacks wisdom [to guide him through a decision or circumstance], he is to ask [of our benevolent] God, who gives to everyone generously and without rebuke or blame, and it will be given to him. But he must ask [for wisdom] in faith, without doubting [God’s willingness to help], for the one who doubts is like a billowing surge of the sea that is blown about and tossed by the wind.” James 1:2-6 AMP
I pressed into the storm knowing and including Father in every aspect of my daily routine. God is faithful and showed me how to balance all that was on my plate.
God showed me His view of my mountain of problems was not as big as it seemed here on earth, when I chose to see it from His perspective by dwelling in him. It calmed the storm that had risen inside of me and put me at peace again.
God knew what he was doing. I just needed to stop trying to fit a God who is without measure into my three-pound brain.
“But as for me, I will sing of Your mighty strength and power;
Yes, I will sing joyfully of Your lovingkindness in the morning;
For You have been my stronghold
And a refuge in the day of my distress.
To You, O [God] my strength, I will sing praises;
For God is my stronghold [my refuge, my protector, my high tower], the God who shows me [steadfast] lovingkindness.” Psalm 59:16-17 AMP
We are not alone. We mean so much to God and His kingdom. Let’s take every opportunity to prove God and show people His love, and we’ll find that we have so much more to give. He will continually add to our lives when we choose to dwell in Him.
To God be the glory! We will praise Him in the sunshine and praise Him through the storm. His love is steadfast and unwavering. It endures forever! Go and conquer with the Father!
Joey is a wild-hearted warrior of Christ. He and his wife Courtney lead a local young adult fellowship.