A few weeks ago, my family and I were driving home after the sun went down. The moon was gorgeously full and lighting up the road almost as if it were still daytime.
After I pointed out the moon to my five-year-old, he said something that stuck with me, “Ya know, Mom, the darker it gets outside, the brighter the moon is.”
The darker things get in our lives…the harder this life becomes…the brighter Jesus can shine.
I’ve seen this so many times in my own life. When my life falls apart, Jesus shows up.
Here are 3 ways Jesus can shine brightly through our trials:
1. Through our hope
When people see us clinging to Jesus with tears falling down our faces, they see hope. When they see us lose a child, go through another miscarriage, learn about the cancer that is spreading through our body, lose our job, or whatever…and we choose hope, they see Jesus.
Here’s the thing about hope, though. Hope isn’t trusting God to fix your problem. Hope is trusting God…period. Even if he doesn’t fix it.
Hope is in a person, not a circumstance.
2. Through our praise
Right before our fourth miscarriage, when I was pretty sure I was losing yet another child I couldn’t wait to hold, I chose to do something that was far from easy. I chose to worship in my pain.
When you and I do that-when we worship God even though He’s not answering our prayers like we want-we show the world Jesus.
That was exactly what Jesus did, after all. Before he went to the cross, he prayed for God to find another way to save humanity. When God didn’t, though, Jesus sang a hymn with his disciples in worship of the father and headed toward the most cruel death that has ever been invented.
3. Through our authenticity
It is through our authenticity people are able to see real faith lived out. It’s okay to have doubts. It’s okay to have questions. People need to see us grappling with hard issues. But they also need to see us running to Jesus with these doubts, finding comfort in his arms, and walking away stronger than we were before we came.
I spoke at a women’s banquet last spring about why authenticity matters. (You can watch that entire keynote here.) Authenticity matters because it is often the tool God uses to heal our hearts. It also matters because it is through our authenticity others see faith with shoes on. One of my favorite quotes is from Kaci Calvaresi: “God can’t use a redemptive story that you’re not willing to tell.”
In the comments, I’d love to hear about you. How has God shown up in your trials? How have you been able to shine His light through a difficulty?