Starting a new business in a highly competitive field, in the middle of a pandemic, seconds after getting married is what some people call “doing too much.” Yet, when I made the decision to go full time with ODStorytime, I knew the Lord was telling me to move and I’d figure the rest out along the way. A month later, I now understand that my success is dependent on a strong relationship with God. Entrepreneurship, life in a pandemic, and working to intentionally create a healthy marriage has illuminated my need to be well versed in what the bible says about navigating tough times. I’ve changed my morning routine to include meditating on different scriptures that calm and prepare me for work and life. Below are five of my favorite bible verses for tough times.
Ephesians 3:19-20 NIV
“and to know this love that surpasses knowledge – that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurable more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us”
This is my big faith verse. When I get caught up in negative thinking, I emotionally drown myself in so much worry that it blocks my ability to clearly think. I then feel that there is no way through this and I’ll be stuck forever.
In these moments, this scripture reminds me that my God is able. He’s able to handle whatever I’m praying over and do it in a way that doesn’t seem possible. God can, and will, give me more than I prayed for. There is no limit to His power.
Matthew 11: 28 – 30 NIV
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
When you hear 10 “no’s” before lunch, you get weary. During a tough season, it feels like you only hear no and there is no such thing as a yes. For me, this creates doubt, frustration, and a sense of hopelessness. I read this scripture every time I feel like there is no point in continuing and it’s time to give up. The truth is that I don’t need to give up, I just need to rest. Thankfully, there is rest in The Lord.
God allows tough times to transpire because they teach us something we’ll need later down our path. He won’t take it away until we’ve learned and grown from it. Yet, he will give us rest in the midst of it all. This rest will help us tackle whatever we’re working on.
Rest is incredibly important. Yet, we often rest our bodies and not our minds. This scripture helps me to understand that true rest comes from the Lord. If I only rest my body but don’t find rest in Him, I will not know true peace. Which means I’ll become easily frazzled, irritated, and defeated. Those feelings aren’t what God wants for your life. Which is why we need to lean into the rest that this verse instructs us to find in Him.
Galatians 6:9 KJV
“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.”
Foolishly, I thought that because God told me to move it meant that everything would be easy. After venting to a friend about my struggles, she simply said “keep going.” Those two words made all the difference.
I started praying over this verse because I needed an official word from God to not give up. This verse also gives me a healthy reality check. If I’m not where I want to be that means I have to keep going. You’ll never get to where you want to be if you stop when it gets hard. When God told me to move, he knew what would be coming my way. He told me to move anyway. This means that it is not my job to stop when things get hard. It’s not my job to spend days at a time feeling insecure or inadequate because of what came against me. My only job is to move and to keep moving. That’s it.
2 Corinthians 12 9-10 NIV
“And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when am weak then I am strong.”
I’ve made so many mistakes in the past month it all started to feel like there was nothing I could do that was right. This scripture taught me that mistakes are okay- and expected. Yet, despite all of my mistakes, I am whole because God fills in the missing gaps.
His grace covers me in all my mistakes. I don’t have to dwell on my mistakes because God has already corrected them and made me stronger. Making mistakes doesn’t make you a bad person. It just makes you a person with more room to show God’s glory.
Psalms 118: 5-6 KJV
“I called upon the Lord in distress: the Lord answered me, and set me in a large place. The Lord is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?”
The first thing I should do when I get frustrated is talk to God. David told God he was in trouble and God immediately removed him from the situation. When you talk to God in distress he soothes and calms you with his perfect peace. Who doesn’t want that?
God then reminded David about who he was. God has moved mountains, made a way out of no way, and done the seemingly impossible since the beginning of time. There is nothing that is too hard for God. If you’re moving in accordance with his will, then through him there is nothing you can’t do. When Jesus says yes, no man, corporation, or corrupt politician can say no. That’s it. Full stop.
What are your favorite bible verses for tough times? Let me know in the comments!