– In my interactions with people, I have seen how the struggles that people face affect them.
– The truth is that we all face challenges and issues that come along life’s path.
– At this time in history there are many things that can challenge us.
– As you are reading this you can probably think of some of the things that you are facing at the moment.
– In all these things you can know that the Lord is with you, He sees you even when you don’t feel seen.
– The Lord is aware of your specific challenges, and He knows what you are going through.
– He has not and will not ever abandon or fail you.
– When it seems like a breakthrough will never come, we can accept His help and turn to Him for the answers we need.
– I have identified 6 areas that people seem to be struggling with, so let’s look at the answers the Lord has for those situations.

– As most of you know, I am a single parent with two daughters. It’s been 5 years since my wife passed away. My hopes and prayers for my daughters is something I carry deep in my heart, and no one really knows or understands this inner and personal struggle I face. When they are doing well, life is good. When they struggle, I carry this weight in my heart.
– Secret struggles are burdens we carry silently.
– As a provider you may be secretly concerned about the security of your job.
– As an individual you may be secretly concerned about your health.
– A few months ago a friend of mine died after a secret four-year battle with head and neck cancer. He was 45 years old.
– All around us, every day we are surrounded by individuals who are carrying these burdens that others know nothing about.
– I once read a quote that said: ‘Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.’
– I remember my own mother telling me about two private struggles that she had while I was growing up. The one was that they would not be able to afford to send me to university and the other one was that they would not be able to give me a decent 21st birthday celebration. (Both of these struggles and fears never became a reality, I got my degree and had a great 21st.)
– The truth is that these secret struggles are very real, but the fear associated with them is often unfounded.
– The answer from the Lord in this situation is – ‘I KNOW, and I SEE!’
– The Lord invites us to come to Him with all our secret struggles so that He can give us rest.
Matthew 11:28 Then Jesus said, ‘Come to Me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.’

– Loneliness and abandonment are 2 of the most basic fears that human beings face.
– It is a very real fear that people grapple with.
– Perhaps you are facing divorce and the thought of being alone is unbearable.
– Perhaps you have lost a loved one and everything seems so empty and alone.
– But there is another type of loneliness where you are surrounded by people, but you still feel alone.
– You could even be part of a wonderful family, but you feel like you are carrying things all by yourself.
– My mother lives in a retirement village and it has about 220 dwelling units. The vast majority of these units are filled with widows and there are only about 12 men in the village. My mother’s observation was that men carry a responsibility, usually alone, that no one really sees, and it influences their lifespan, while women often have to end up alone.
– The answer from the Lord in this situation is – ‘I AM WITH YOU!’
Hebrews 13:5 For He has said, “I WILL NEVER [under any circumstances] DESERT YOU [nor give you up nor leave you without support, nor will I in any degree leave you helpless], NOR WILL I FORSAKE or LET YOU DOWN or RELAX MY HOLD ON YOU [assuredly not]!” (Amplified Bible)
– The Lord is by your side – you are never alone.

– Many times, we carry within us our cares and concerns for others.
– As a child I carry concerns for my mother, I often pray that God will strengthen her and preserve her life.
– As a parent I carry concerns for my daughters. I ask the Lord to protect them, and I pray that they will have success, happiness and peace.
– As a Pastor I carry concerns for my members, and I pray for the people of God for whom I am responsible.
– We often receive prayer requests from people regarding the concerns they have for their families, their spouses and their friends.
– I believe that God places people in our lives. Some people are in our lives for many years and some people touch our lives for fleeting moments. I am persuaded that God places love and care in our hearts towards these people and their wellbeing becomes important to us. We want the best for them, and we don’t want to see them destroyed. Perhaps that’s what the Bible speaks about when it says we should ‘bear each other’s burdens.’
– This is especially true when it comes to parents and the issues their children face. I have seen many a parent with a heavy heart because of what their children are facing or going through.
– The Lord shares the concerns you have for others.
– The answer from the Lord in this situation is – ‘I CARE, AND I AM RESPONSIBLE FOR THOSE YOU CARE ABOUT!’
Matthew 6:30 ‘And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, He will certainly care for you.’
– And may I add: ‘He will certainly care for those you care about!’

– In the issues and challenges of life we can sometimes be left struggling to believe.
– In my own life I have held on and trusted God for some things, only to later discover that God had something different in mind.
– God may not immediately or miraculously change our difficult situations, but He gives us the power to face what is in front of us and to continue to believe in His goodness and providence.
Mark 5:35-36 While Jesus was still speaking, some people came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue leader. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother the Teacher anymore?” Overhearing what they said, Jesus told him, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”
– In the midst of this desperate situation Jesus tells them to just believe. He would never have told them this if it was not possible.
– You see it is possible, because the Lord comes alongside you to give you the strength to believe.
– The answer from the Lord in this situation is – ‘JUST BELIEVE and KEEP ON BELIEVING IN ME!’
Ephesians 1:19 ‘I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe Him.’ NLT

– Letting go can be one of the hardest things to do.
– Sometimes when we have been through some challenges we begin to own those challenges. This leads to us trying to solve things in our own strength and ability.
– Sometimes we just have to let go and let God.
– I remember hearing a story about a monkey and a bottle of peanuts. One day a man wanted to catch a monkey. He took peanuts and placed them in a bottle with a narrow neck. A monkey came and slipped his hand into the jar and grabbed a handful of peanuts. But when he tried to get his hand out of the jar he could not get it out with his hand full of peanuts. He could have let go of the peanuts and got away but he was attached to the peanuts in his closed fist. In the process he was caught because he couldn’t let go.
– You and I have the gift of letting go.
– Perhaps you have held onto something for too long and it has started to bring harm to your life.
– Maybe it is a hurt, a disappointment, an offense, a fear, or even the death of a dream.
– The answer from the Lord in this situation is – ‘LET ME HELP YOU TO LET GO, and REMEMBER, I WILL HELP YOU!’
Proverbs 3:5-6 ‘Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.’
Philippians 4:6 ‘Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.’

– Hope is that essential ingredient in life.
– It is the hope of a new day that gets us up in the morning.
– His mercies are new every morning and therefore we can have hope.
– Losing hope drains our strength and makes us weak.
– Hopelessness is not part of God’s plan for your life.
– We have the promise of a blessed hope in God.
– Hope is the thing that connects us to God.
Hebrews 6:19 ‘This hope [this confident assurance] we have as an anchor of the soul [it cannot slip, and it cannot break down under whatever pressure bears upon it] – a safe and steadfast hope that enters within the veil [of the heavenly temple, that most Holy Place in which the very presence of God dwells]’.
– Hope is like an anchor for our souls.
– The answer from the Lord in this situation is – ‘I AM YOUR BLESSED HOPE, HOLD ONTO ME!’
– You have a future and hope for today, and for tomorrow, and for eternity.
Romans 12:12 ‘Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.’

You can rely on the fact that the Lord has the answer to your struggles. It does not matter if it is secret struggles, loneliness, concerns for our loved ones or moments of doubt, the Lord holds the answers to all of these. May you find strength and comfort in knowing that God has the answers and that He will help you navigate the complexities of life.

By Andrew W Roebert
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