5 Truths to Get You Through Hard Times

Jennifer Slattery

Published: Mar 10, 2022
5 Truths to Get You Through Hard Times Plus

When challenges and hardships hit, it’s easy to feel abandoned and alone. Those who’ve been hurting for some time may fear their suffering will never end and good will never come. If that’s you, I hope these promises help to reignite your hope.       

Here are 5 truths to get you through hard times: 

Photo Credit: © Pexels/Tony James Andersson

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1. God Sees You

In our darkest moments, when all we can see are the thick thunderclouds above us and the impenetrable fog ahead, we might feel insignificant, overlooked, or ignored. No doubt, this was precisely how the Egyptian slave Hagar felt. You can read her story in Genesis 16 and 21. Scholars suggest the Egyptian Pharaoh gave her to Abraham, the Jewish patriarch, and his wife Sarah, in Genesis 12, when he drove both of them out of Egypt. If so, Hagar would have lost a great deal—her homeland, presumably her family, everything familiar, to live as a servant with a nomadic husband and wife. Her pain must have greatly increased when, years later, the barren couple forced her to play the role of a surrogate. 

Although a relatively common practice in ancient Mesopotamia, this act must have shattered her already bruised heart. Once she became pregnant, hostility grew between her and her mistress. Eventually, Sarah treated Hagar so harshly, she fled. But Scripture tells us the angel of the Lord, who many scholars believe was the pre-incarnate Christ, found her near a spring in the desert, engaged her in conversation, and promised to build a nation from her descendants. 

To this, she replied, “You are the God who sees me. I have now seen the One who sees me” (Gen. 16:13). 

God sees us in our pain as well. In Psalm 33, we read, “From heaven the Lord looks down and sees all mankind; from His dwelling place he watches all who live on earth—” and, “But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear Him, on those whose hope is in His unfailing love” (v. 13-14, 18, NIV). 

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woman looking off at the distant mountains

2. God Cares About Our Plight

I’m deeply grieved when someone or something hurts the people I love. This is doubly true when that person is my daughter. When someone or something wounds her, especially if that wounding appears deep or unjust, I often experience a gut-level reaction and a strong desire to come to her defense. Scripture indicates that God’s love for us runs even deeper than a parent’s adoration for their child. 

In Isaiah 49:15-16, we read, “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are ever before me” (NIV). 

In other words, God’s love for us, His children, is even greater than what some might consider the epitome of enduring, selfless love. In short, humankind has no comparison to God's love for flawed people.

Jesus painted a similar analogy in Matthew 7 when He said, “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?  If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him!” (v. 9-10, NIV). 

While this doesn’t mean God will grant our every desire, it does assure us of His tenderness and compassion towards us.  

Photo Credit: ©iStock/Getty Images Plus/vikialis

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3. God Remains Attentive to Our Prayers

You may have heard someone say when reaching out to a friend that they wanted “Jesus with skin on.” We’ve probably all felt this way, especially during difficult seasons, and rightfully so. God created us to live interdependently with one another. But He also formed us for an intimate relationship with Him. Our hearts crave that connection, just as our God yearns for us. He sees our every tear, knows our every fear, and stays alert to our every desperate plea. 

In 1 Peter 3:12, we read, “For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer” (NIV), and Isaiah 65:12 states, “Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear” (NIV). 

4. God Has Good Planned for Us

When buffeted by one hardship after another, it’s easy to feel discouraged and defeated. When focused on our difficulties, it’s easy to lose hope. But Scripture promises today’s heartache won’t last forever. As Psalm 30:5 states, our “weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning” (NIV). What’s more, God will use everything we experience today for our ultimate good—to make us more like Christ (Rom. 8:28-30).

This is true when our problems are caused by the actions of others and when they’re self-induced. In Jeremiah 29, God told His exiled people, “'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'” After centuries of rebellion, during which God had warned them repeatedly, urgently, He had removed His protective hand. As a result, the Assyrians conquered the northern and southern kingdoms, destroyed their beloved city, and took the people captive.

Their circumstances seemed dire and irredeemable, but God assured them this wasn’t the case. He hadn’t forgotten them, nor would He abandon them. One day, He would redeem and restore His chosen people. Through Christ, our Father made a similar promise to you and me. Nothing we experience can separate us from God’s love or steal our hope-filled future. 

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flower growing through hard ground, hope

5. God Will Strengthen Us

When you feel overwhelmed by what’s ahead, take heart! God won’t leave you to fight your battles alone. In Hebrews, we’re instructed to approach God’s throne with boldness knowing we will receive help in our time of need (v. 4:16). 

This promise is repeated throughout Scripture. For example, in Isaiah 41:10, God tells us not to fear or feel dismayed, not because trials won’t come, but rather because our ever-present, all-powerful God remains at our side. He said, “I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10, NIV). 

David, ancient Israel’s second king and a man who spent ten years fleeing from a murderous madman, understood and found courage in this truth, stating, “My God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation. He is my stronghold, my refuge and my savior—from violent people you save me” (2 Samuel 22:3, NIV).

All-powerful, all-knowing, sovereign God is on our side, which means we have nothing to fear. As the apostle Paul wrote in Romans 8, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” adding, “He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us” (vs. 31-34, NIV).

Our loving, faithful, and ever-attentive Heavenly Father sees, hears, and cares deeply for us. He stands behind us, ready to catch us when we fall. He walks beside us as our comforter and our friend. He goes before us to clear the way and protect us from potholes that could trip us up and surrounds us with His love. This means we will never experience anything alone or without God’s help. On the contrary, in Christ, we are amply supplied and sufficiently empowered.

 Photo Credit: ©RNS/Klimkin/Creative Commons

Jennifer Slattery is a writer and speaker who hosts the Faith Over Fear podcast. She’s addressed women’s groups, Bible studies, and writers across the nation. She’s the author of Building a Family and numerous other titles and maintains a devotional blog at JenniferSlatteryLivesOutLoud.com.

As the founder of Wholly Loved Ministries, she’s passionate about helping women experience Christ’s freedom in all areas of their lives. Visit her online to learn more about her speaking or to book her for your next women’s event  and sign up for her free quarterly newsletter HERE  and make sure to connect with her on Facebook and Instagram.

Originally published Thursday, 10 March 2022.