Recently I have gone through quite a few personal trials. Life has been a touch overwhelming.

When living gets overwhelming and seems to overpower and crush us, we need our God. #AskGodToday Click To Tweet

We can’t let it defeat us.

In a matter of 14 months my family experienced about every “major life event” that people can. Just one can cause stress and worry, but try a number of them in a short period of time and this is where the testing of your faith, character and beliefs can happen.

It all began in January 2015.

Our daughter wrecked and totaled her vehicle. She flipped her car Hannah's accidentand ended up on her head. Thankfully, she walked away with only a scratch. It was a miracle.

Less than a month later we purchased her a new vehicle.

Then we dealt with teenage rebellion and she moved out of our home in February (needless to say, without the car). Kids! This was devastating to us because she was only 17.

We have five children and another daughter of ours was preparing for a June wedding. Wedding Dar

We bought and paid for a beautiful wedding.

Melissa and Drew walking down the aisleThen she moved out too.

This mama was happy. Melissa and me at her weddingBut this mama’s heart was sad as well because she had lived with me most of her life and I knew I would miss her.

So then what do you think we decided to do?

Not that a wreck, new car purchase, rebellion and paying for a wedding wasn’t enough.

We decided to put our house on the market. Time to downsize.

_DSC9249First, however, my hubby hit 50 and we went on a cruise to Alaska. A little of the overwhelming life was forgotten at least for a week.

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God’s timing was perfect on this because we left six days after the wedding.

You do know God’s timing is always perfect? #AskGodToday Click To Tweet

At this time we only had one child still left at home and he was 20, so we thought the timing would be great to sell our house.

If you have ever sold a house, you know the work that goes into de-cluttering and keeping the house clean to show. Right?

Less than a month later, I started getting sick and throwing up, first only on the weekends for four weeks straight, and then all the time. Along with the weekend sickness I was also visiting the bathroom more than 20 times a day with the dreaded “d.”

It progressively got worse. After numerous doctor visits I was diagnosed with heart disease that if undetected could be fatal, and with IBS and pyloric stenosis, resulting in adjusting and increasing my heart meds and other medications, and not just one endoscopy but two, to see what was wrong with me, in an effort to restore my health. Thankful that God led the doctor to discover my heart disease so they could treat it. 

Any time you don’t feel good, life is just harder. God, however, never left me and continued to allow me to feel good when I needed to and rest when I could.

I spent Christmas sick and unable to attend the Christmas Eve service or our family Christmas Eve dinner.

Talk about being ready for a new year—I was.

2016 - pixabay

The only problem . . . The New Year rang in just as hard.

Tick-tock, tick-tock. Time ticks away and after several months our now 18-year-old daughter came home, but not alone. She was pregnant and due in March.

How would you react?

We all want people to show us grace and extend hope to us, so we chose to extend that grace to her as well and love her through this time in her life. 

Our house hadn’t yet sold, so it came off the market and we were trusting that God just wanted us to stay in it.

Knowing that we needed some more income, I started looking for a full or part-time ministry job, to no avail. I have been in the insurance industry for 30 years and really wanted to find a ministry position. But an insurance manager approached me and offered me a position I couldn’t refuse, with great benefits and income.

Beginning on February 19th all of sudden I was learning a new way to market and sell insurance. 

Bam . . . I am working full-time again. job

Life changes.

Life happens.

Seeking God through the process of job hunting and asking for His will assured me that this is where He wants me right now. Until He leads me differently, I will do what I am led to do.

Nevertheless, have you ever felt too old to learn a new job? Talk about overwhelming—I sometimes wonder how I will learn it all.

Continuing on this journey called life, in the month of March we had a new grand baby. Hannah and EllaShe is not only in our family, but we have a newborn in our home and she is five weeks old today. Love, love, love her!

We love it! She is beautiful! 

Shortly after that her mommy and daddy decided to get married and we planned a wedding in only FOUR days. _DSC1883

Yes, it can be done!

Ask me how.

The night before the wedding, at 1:00 in the morning we got word Eddie Montgomery 2that our son-in-law had died. The day of his death was Good Friday. He was married to our oldest daughter and the father of two of our precious granddaughters.  

Devastation set in. Sadness and tears. Questions of why? Heartbreak!

What about you?

Are you in a period of devastation, sadness and tears? Is your heart broken and you too are asking God “why?”

God hears us. God calms us. God comforts and wipes the tears away. Our God is a God of hope.… Click To Tweet

God then gave us something I will never forget.

After receiving the call about our son-in-law and trying to calm our daughters down, my husband and I were lying in bed and couldn’t go back to sleep. So he started praying (love my godly man) as we do every night together before bed.

After the prayer I opened my eyes and on our bedroom wall I saw something beautiful. I told my husband to look and I said, “Do you see that?” He said “yes.” I responded by saying, “That is the hope of Jesus.”

God reached out and down to us and gave us hope through a cross, a big cross on our wall. The room was dark with only a small night light shining and on the wall behind my husband, as plain as could be, there was a cross shining. We had never seen it before, but we now see it every night shining brightly on our wall.

We have tried to take pictures but they don’t capture the beauty in the shadow.

God heard our prayers for comfort and peace for our family.

Our God is a God of hope.

He loves us! He cares about me, my husband, our daughters and sons, our grandbabies and all of the overwhelming situations in our life.
Our most recent adventure has been the opening of my daughter’s new business all in the midst of a wedding,  a funeral and a new baby and a new job! If you live in the Spartanburg area come check out the store.

God loves and cares about you and your family too.

Nothing is too big for Him. He understands our heart and sees the tears streaming down our face and He wipes every one of them away with His love.

If today finds you in a place of being overwhelmed, whatever the circumstance or issue, I pray that you will lay all your defeats, problems and heartbreak at the feet and cross of Jesus.

Trade in your sorrows for the joy of Jesus. #AskGodToday Click To Tweet


Fight away your difficulties with the sword of the Spirit, which is the Bible. #AskGodToday Click To Tweet

I know life can be overwhelming. I also know that when we focus our eyes “above the waves” as Hillsong sings in “Oceans,” instead of being overwhelmed with life, we can be overwhelmed with the goodness and love of Christ.

Rise up, dear warrior! God strengthens you with the will and desire to overcome! #AskGodToday Click To Tweet

Nothing is impossible with Him!

Are you overwhelmed and would like for us to pray for you? All you have to do is say “yes” in the comments and our team will pray for you.

God allows us to go through different seasons of sadness and situations. He permits times of tremendous fear where we learn to trust Him and overcome the uncertainty. God reminds us of His love by periods of peace and gives us joy on the journey.

 

 

Sometimes it is to teach us so we can teach others. It is to test us so we can be confident of His ways and comfort others with the comfort He has given us. We can share with others what He has done for us.

Last November we began planning our upcoming conference. AGT-Team

We would love to have you attend our first annual Women’s Conference on June 24-25, 2016 with special recording artist Mike Weaver from Big Daddy Weave. Mike-Weaver-Press-Photo-8.15

Here are the event details and the place where you can order your tickets. Our conference is titled “Overwhelmed with Life to Overwhelmed with Christ.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hope to see you there!

 

 

 

 

 

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brendamcgraw@yahoo.com'

About Brenda McGraw

Brenda McGraw is the founder of Ask God Today Ministries where a team of writers share hope and truth with others. She has a God-given dream to reach the masses with the gospel of Christ. Brenda is an author and speaker who reveals how to discover joy beyond the clutter of life. She draws from her own life experiences in the #1 Amazon Best seller,“Joy Beyond, 28 Days to Finding Joy Beyond the Clutter of Life”. She has two new books released. Finished, Top Ten Steps to Finish Writing a Book and Living Uncluttered, An Abundant Life Bible Study. Brenda lives in South Carolina with her husband, Jeff and one of their five children. She is a survivor of breast cancer and a heart attack. Despite the challenges she has endured, Brenda found peace through her relationship with Jesus Christ.
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