About five or six years ago, I went through a season where I struggled with depression, which included insomnia.
One night, I vividly remember sitting in a red chair in our bedroom, trying to pray. Yet, I couldn’t really focus on praying. I knew the Lord was there, but I still felt low and empty.
The radio was on, and it was then that I heard a song that touched me in a way nothing else could. It was “Blessings” by Laura Story.
Oh, sister, I cried through the entire song. I just kept thinking, “Yes!” Maybe it really was, as Laura sings, “a thousand sleepless nights” that would help me know God was near.
I later learned that Laura wrote “Blessings” from a place of deep pain in her own life. When she and her husband Martin were newlyweds, he was diagnosed with a brain tumor, and though he survived, their lives have never been the same. Through the song, she wants to encourage us to trust God in all things—both the good and the bad.
Maybe, like Laura, your life hasn’t turned out quite as you planned either?
Sometimes God’s plans and our plans aren’t the same. If you find yourself in a place of clenched fists today, grasping for control, you must listen in on this episode of 4:13 Podcast!
KC and I spend time with Laura, and she talks about some practical ways we can live with open hands to what God has planned for us. She’s is delightful and deep, and you will get so much from her, friend!
3 Practical Ways to Live With Open Hands
- Modify expectations. Expecting to always be in control is an unrealistic way to live, so that’s why you open your hands and adjust your expectations. In other words, you don’t expect your will to always be done, or that you’ll always be in control. But instead, you pray like Jesus, “Not my will, but your will be done” (Luke 22:42).
- Cling to Scripture. Clinging to Scripture is different than reading Scripture. Psalm 119:92 says, “If your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction.” The Psalmist clung to God’s Word. It sustained Him during difficult times. It can do the same for you. You can live with open hands by grasping for Scripture and holding on tight your whole life with your whole heart.
- Surround yourself with believers. You need to be with a body of believers in a church—or a community of truth—that will walk with you. We need each other. As Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 points to, we are better together.
KC’s List of Encouraging Takeaways
- Give Jesus control of your heart.
- Trust Him in the middle of the trial.
- Believe there is something good happening even when you can’t see it.
- Have an eternal perspective.
- Don’t settle for purposeless pain.
- Let your sorrow, your loss, your disappointment, all be sources of abundance and blessing you didn’t expect.
- Be willing to sacrifice your expectations and seek the bigger plan.
Friend, what if God has something more for you? You will never know the answer if you don’t live with open hands. So, 4:13ers, let’s live with open hands.
We can because we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength. No matter what you fear, how you feel, or what you face … you can do all things through Christ who gives you strength!
Books and Bible Studies by Jennifer Rothschild
- God Is Just Not Fair: Finding Hope When Life Doesn’t Make Sense
- Missing Pieces: Real Hope When Life Doesn’t Make Sense Bible Study
- Lessons I Learned in the Dark: Steps to Walking By Faith, Not By Sight
- Walking By Faith Bible Study
More from Laura Story
- Open Hands CD
- When God Doesn’t Fix It: Lessons You Never Wanted to Learn, Truths You Can’t Live Without
- Laura’s website
*** You can hear from amazing people like Laura at a Fresh Grounded Faith event near you! Find an FGF in your area here.***
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Have you ever heard a song that touched you in a way nothing else could? Share the song in the comments and how God used it to encourage you.