Desperate for Jesus

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We may not think of our struggles as gifts, but when we let our troubles draw us closer to Jesus, He amazes us with inexplicable peace and a new vision of strength.

As a deer gets thirsty for streams of water, I truly am thirsty for you, my God. In my heart, I am thirsty for you, the living God. When will I see your face? Psalm 42:1–2, CEV

Nearly breathless, I tried to focus on the thrum of my running shoes against the scorching asphalt. Only another half mile.

Though it was still morning, the late-August sun burned my scalp, and my lungs begged for relief. Unrelenting rays targeted every uncovered inch of me, defying the sweatproof sunscreen I had lathered on less than thirty minutes earlier.

I was desperate but determined not to quit. No way would I negate the two-and-a-half-mile investment I’d already made in this workout. I would finish if it meant crawling the last few yards home!

Sometimes life feels like that run. Quite possibly you’ve felt desperate at some point in your story. Longing for a break, for relief, for peace, for contentment? Sometimes even blessings leave us feeling wound up and well…desperate. Stress is stress, even if it’s good stress such as family commitments, much-loved career responsibilities or important ministry obligations.

Someone I care about has spent the last eight years in survival mode because of certain challenges her family is enduring. I’ll never forget when she told me that she’s partly afraid of things getting better—as much as she craves that rest—because she’s terrified of returning to a lifestyle when she isn’t desperate for Jesus’ promises and presence to meet her minute-to-minute needs. That is an achingly beautiful place to be.

We may not think of struggles as gifts, but when we let our troubles draw us closer to Jesus, He amazes us with inexplicable peace and a new vision of where our strength comes from.

FAITH STEP: Think of someone you know who is facing difficult circumstances. Ask Jesus to make their greatest desperation to be for Him. Pray John 4:14 for that person.

Erin Keeley Marshall

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