Heidi ministering on Jimpia Island near Londo. Photo credit: James Brewer
Many times in church I’ve heard the phrase “if you don’t give up, you win.” There’s no other aspect of life where that is as true as in our relationship with Jesus. The stories my friends have shared with me for my new devotional, God’s Got This, are in many ways as simple as that — each one encountered unique difficulties, and each one can tell you truly that “the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:7 NIV).
During the last few years in the north of Mozambique, I, my husband Rolland, our Iris Global team, and our Mozambique family have had to lean on this like never before in our lives. When we tell people that this is true, we know that many of them have faced devastating persecution. Many of them have lost friends and family members for the sake of the gospel. Many more have lost houses, farmland, or entire villages. Some have been physically tortured. Some might think that it is cruel to tell such people, “Love wins.” In fact, it’s the simple truth. God’s love can wholly transform our experience of life here and now but is also stronger than death. It will always hold us. If we stumble it will gather us close again, even from beyond the grave. When you truly know and share God’s love, grief and loss are never, ever, the end of the story. There is always another chapter. The ending is always abundant life. We would be lying if we said that it is easy for everyone to feel this all the time, most especially where we live. Yet faith is able to see the promise, even when it feels like the most distant of dreams. Faith gives real sustenance, beyond anything else in this world. And its reward is never lost.
Far beyond our adopted nation’s struggles, the world convulses with many other troubles—too many to count. There are famines. There is a disease. There is financial uncertainty, political chaos, and simple loneliness. There is heartbreak, addiction, and mass spiritual poverty. But in this age of the world, we can never repeat it enough: God’s got this! There is no need to make this point of theology too complicated for even the simplest people to understand. The Lord’s goodness is for everyone to lean on, great or small. It is everlasting, and it is for you to share all the more with others as you learn to depend on it yourself.
Romans 8:21 says:
“all creation longs for freedom from its slavery to decay and to experience with us the wonderful freedom coming to God’s children. To this day we are aware of the universal agony and groaning of creation, as if it were in the contractions of labor for childbirth. And it’s not just creation. We who have already experienced the first fruits of the Spirit also inwardly groan as we passionately long to experience our full status as God’s sons and daughters—including our physical bodies being transformed”.Romans 8:21 TPT
There are more than enough people in this world who can tell you why there is no real hope—no hope for enduring joy, no hope for freedom from sin and despair, no hope for thriving communities and a joyful future. Sometimes even the air around us can seem filled with deception, cruelty, and chaos. But “see to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ” (Col. 2:8 NIV). Your hope depends not on your own ability to figure out the right thing to do, but on the God who sent his son to give his life for you. It’s something a little child knows how to accept, and when nothing else is left of our own strength, that is what we must be like. The truth is, there really are evil powers in the world that want your destruction. They want you to suffer. They want to convince you that there is nothing else to do but give up and despair, so that they can rule a broken world for a little longer. They can lie to you and bring you pain, but they are already condemned. They have lost. Their time is almost over.
How are the wicked powers of the world rebuked? In and through you! By the faithfulness of your testimony. By the revelation of the sons and daughters of God coming to maturity.
How do you fight back? How do you win? It is not a secret!
“Be enthusiastic to serve the Lord, keeping your passion toward him boiling hot! Radiate with the glow of the Holy Spirit and let him fill you with excitement as you serve him. Let this hope burst forth within you, releasing a continual joy. Don’t give up in a time of trouble, but commune with God at all times.”Romans 12:11-12 TPT
Commune with God at all times! Pray so that prayer becomes your way of life. Remember him even while you work, play, and dream. Stand with confidence on what God has promised in return:
“You will answer me, God; I know you always will. Hear my words like you always do as you listen to my every prayer.”Psalm 17:6 TPT
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Heidi Baker and her husband, Rolland, founded Iris Ministries in 1980. Now Iris Global, their ministry includes Iris University, Bible schools, primary and secondary schools, medical clinics, farms, food and Bible distributions, churches, prayer houses, and more. Heidi and her team oversee these programs, and she has become “Mama Aida” to thousands of people across the world.
In her devotional God’s Got This, Heidi Baker interviewed a number of courageous believers, asking them what challenges they have overcome with God’s help. Inspired by their resilience, trust, tenacity, and joy, Heidi recounts the extraordinary true stories of men and women who fixed their eyes on Jesus and never gave up. Heidi also vulnerably shares some of her deepest fears and most difficult experiences, revealing how she, too, learned to overcome life’s trials through faith in God and trust in his Word. Let this collection of powerful stories move you and remind you that no matter what storms you face, God’s got this. Learn more here.