Thursday, September 27, 2007

Walking through difficulty... together

I almost did not write this post. Honestly, compared to many people and the struggles that they are going through, it is hard for me to call my struggles "difficulties". But, there are difficulties in my life. Everyone goes through difficulties, trials, struggles, whatever we want to call them.

Lately, our difficulties have included spiritual struggles, health problems, financial strains, and emotional trials. We've had relationship problems without our family and with those outside our family.

Struggles are universal. Comparatively, some have more difficult lives; some have less difficult lives. But, every life comes with its share of problems. Every person suffers in some way.

There is a difference for us though: we are not suffering alone. For some reason, explainable only as the grace of God, we have been surrounded by people who have helped us walk through difficulties. Only in the last few weeks, God has used (in no particular order) Maël and Cindy, Dan and Kate, Stan and Renata, Theron and Cheryl, Lew, Gary, Glenn, Dusty, Rodney and Denise, Jim and Kirstie, Anthony, and many, many other people to speak words of encouragement, to lend helping hands, to ask difficult questions, to offer support, to pray, to listen, to teach.

Recently, I was talking with a good friend who spent some time in another country. This time was difficult for him and his family. But, he also recognized how God provided certain people at just the right time to help them through these struggles.

Talking to my friend reminded me of how often I take these fellow travellers for granted. We are all walking in the journey. God allows us to cross path with many people. Sometimes, we cross paths with people so that we can help them. Sometimes, we cross paths with people so that they can help us. Sometimes, we cross paths because we need one another. Whatever the reason, I never want to take for granted the children of God that he chooses to bring into my life. Many times I find that God gives me the strength to make it through trials through these fellow travellers who humbly and gently choose to walk through difficulties with us. Sometimes, it is through these fellow travellers that God demonstrates his love, mercy, grace, and justice.

I thank God for the brothers and sisters that he regularly sends to walk with us through difficulty. I thank my brothers and sisters for giving so generously of yourselves, your time, your resources, and your energy.

Perhaps you would like to thank God for some people who are walking or have walked through difficulty together with you.


Sis Zabrina said...

Hi there Alan,

Your post is so true. I have with me on a fridge magnet a quote from Oprah that goes something like this... (paraphrase)

It doesnt matter who are with you in your limo, what matters is who will take the bus with you when you limo breaks down!

I totally agree... dont you think so? :)

Warm wishes,

Alan Knox said...


Thank you for the comment. While I usually don't quote Oprah, I think she's onto something here. Many people will hang around with us when things are going well. But, what happens during the difficult times? I think that's when God shows us which of his children truly understand love.


Joan said...

I cannot imagine anything sadder than trying to walk through this life without my precious friends. They are God's gift to us. A real treasure!!!

Joan said...

God is Love and Love is a Verb! For sure!

Tracy said...

Thanks for this post.

It is indeed a good thing to take time to recognize and be grateful for those people God is constantly bringing into our lives. To be grateful that He actually uses us in the lives of others.

God is so good and I know I couldn't do life alone. Without Him or without the people He graciously puts in my path.

Jeff said...

Good post. We too often overlook, fail to notice or appreciate or acknowledge, and take for granted, so many blessings that God sends our way on a daily basis. He protects us constantly. Of course, our very heartbeat is literally dependent upon Him. He answers not only the prayers, but often the desires of the Christian, as well.

Friends are one of the many blessings that God gives us, and a true friend is a priceless treasure.

Bendz said...


Nice post. Whenever we're in difficult situations, we've got relatives, friends.
We're all in the same boat.

Nice post.
Keep it up.
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Donovan said...

Thanks for your comment!

God Bless!!

Gary Means said...

You said, "God has used", "God provided", "God allows us to cross path with many people", "I thank God for the brothers and sisters that he regularly sends". I ask, with all sincerity and meaning no offense, why it is that you credit God with relationships in your life that nonbelievers also experience without giving credit to God? Are you certain that God is orchestrating these events and relationships, and if so, what gives you that certainty? When I used to be certain of these things, it was "faith" based on my beliefs formed by my understanding of scripture.

I am glad that you have people in your life who support and affirm you. People like that are, well, I was going to use the vernacular, "Godsends". It's not that I totally discount the possibility that God superintends such things. I'm just at a very low point in my faith journey.

My apologies if this is an inappropriate or unwelcome intrusion. I found your blog while wandering from link to link, and your post touched me, but it also prompted these personal questions.

Pax vobiscum.

Renata said...

Hey Alan, I had decided to see if there was anything new posted on this blog. What is written here has been ringing so true to me. I am thankful for those people who have walked with me through my difficulty. I am also able to let them walk with me because several others have allowed me to walk with them during their suffering. During this time, their thoughts and comments echo in my mind, and it has strengthened me.

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Anonymous said...

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