Oh, I so enjoy reading, it is amazing to find yourself learning from so many different views in life. Over the past few weeks I have read some very good books, some of which dealt with struggles that the the authors have experienced in their lives, and the resulting effect that these struggles have made on their lives.

When you think about it, our lives are truly ever so perilous and as the old saying goes, we are all just a phone call away from being on our knees in prayer. Our article this week will address how I believe God uses the different struggles we have in our lives to make us stronger and thus try and show how in a sense we are indeed blessed through life’s struggles.

However, I want to first share with you the names of those books I mentioned above and again encourage you to add these to your reading list.

No. 1. “No Such Thing As a Bad Day,” by Hamilton Jordan. You might recall this name as he was the chief of staff for President Jimmy Carter in the late ’70s. However, this book is more about his life and his battle with three different forms of cancer in his life from the age of 40-50. I don’t want to tell you too much about the book, but I will tell you that he so lived out the title and took each and every day as a blessing to be lived and he expands on this in his book. See right away, God showing us thru the eyes of another how we can best slow down our pace of life and truly each day to its fullest.

No. 2. The second book I want to introduce you to is called, “Beating Goliath,” by Art Briles, My story of football and faith. Coach Briles was one of the most successful coaches in the history of high school football in Texas, and then went on to be very successful in the college ranks as well. His son Kendall is today the offensive coordinator for the University of Arkansas. His story is also very unique, when he was in college his parents and another person very special to him, died in a car wreck on the way to watch him play a game. Talk about life turning over in an instant. Coach Briles expands on the impact of this in his life and how he gained an ability to help others thru his trial. Once again, God using tragedy for good in the lives of others.

I have shared with you all many times before that I volunteer at Renewal Ranch, where I get to teach the residents and also mentor men as they go thru their different phases at the Ranch. These men are dealing with overcoming addiction in their lives, and I try my best to share with them how their testimony will be so very strong to help other men overcome the same. Who better to help another person overcome an addiction than one who has fought and overcome the same in their life.

In my life I so like things to go according to plan, but life just doesn’t always work out this way and it is necessary for me and us to be flexible in our plans. Struggles, disappointments and trials do not have to define who we are as we can take these events and draw strength from them in our overcoming these issues in our lives. The old saying goes that you are either coming out of a struggle in your life, currently in a struggle, or soon about to head into one, so be strong, trust in God, turn to him in prayer, recognizing that God never leaves you or forsakes you, no matter how difficult your struggles in life may be. We can grow from this issues and truly find blessings in them in such a way that allows us to lift up and strengthen another who may come across our path.

I’ll close this week with a wonderful scripture verse to strengthen you in your life during the next struggle or trial that comes your way.

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10

Friends, blessings are all around us, all the time, even in the midst of some of life’s most trying of times. Stay strong and know that you are not alone. Until next week.

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