Testimony Thursday by Guest Writer: Blakni Riley

Death is inevitable. Pain feels insurmountable. Grief is survivable

I know.

It sounds counterintuitive to everything we know. We use words like, “I would never survive that.” Or maybe, “I can’t live without you.” Tossed flippantly, we coast through life without much regard or awareness of life.

That is until we are faced with a crisis of epic proportions. The images of our nightmares play out in real time.

She dies.

Or he leaves.

Maybe the bank takes everything.

Perhaps scorned for your mistakes, you are alone.

How do you come back from any of those things?

The world would say give up. Throw in the towel. Curse God and die. Job’s wife told him the same thing. Caught up in the weight of her own torture, she all but begged her husband to turn on the One who allowed literally everything to be stripped from him. I don’t blame her. In fact, when my youngest daughter died, I related so easily with her, I wondered what was in it for Job that he didn’t take her advice.

Why didn’t Job do as was suggested and give in? He was obviously in pain. Pain that encompassed him in its entirety. Spiritually, emotionally and physically. He was consumed, yet he continued to rely on God. He longed for relief, full of utter grief, to be freed from what was ripping him to shreds.

Have you ever felt like that? Maybe you feel like that right now. Don’t discount it. It’s not all in your head. Regardless of what some may lead you to believe. Your pain is real.

Can I tell you something? Hope is just as real.

There is a reason Job wouldn’t give in, even when his flesh and the pain threatened to consume him. He knew the same One who had allowed it, was the same One who was with him in it, and the same One who would take every bit of what was happening and carry it to its fullness. No matter what.

being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ; Philippians 1:6 New King James Version

What resulted was a transparency in the relationship between Job and God, independent of the circumstances surrounding him and the words of the people attempting to encourage him. Job declared,

“To God belong wisdom and power; counsel and understanding are his. Job 12:13 New International Version

Through that relationship, Job found strength that he would not have found elsewhere. That was a fact for Job and continues to be factual for you and me.

It was in the raw honesty of my feelings towards the Father that I met Him as He really is.

BLAKNI RILEY

I had believed Him to be conditional and relentless in proving His points that He is God and we are not. I believed a lie for a really long time that my actions are what caused my daughter to die. That He orchestrated it as rebuke, or payback for my previous poor decisions. It wasn’t until I laid it all on the line that I discovered His true character.

I found God to be:

Faithful. Even when we aren’t and believe He isn’t. He still is.

He is always there in it with us. Through it. Despite it. Even when it gets really ugly and messy.

That truth, Sister, is what Job clung to in his grief and what you can grab hold of as well. It doesn’t matter if you don’t feel it. It doesn’t matter if you don’t feel worthy enough to receive it. It is still yours for the taking, because it is the truth of the hope Christ provides for those He loves. You are who He loves. Totally and completely.

He is how we breathe in and out, and how we persevere when the world around us says to quit.

You’ve got what you need if you have Him. If you don’t, I’d like to introduce you to Him. His name is Jesus. He gave everything to have a relationship with you so that you know Hope is real.

He is how we press forward when the worst happens. That’s what a relationship with Christ is. Relationship in its purest form, because it involves the Creator of it all.

Which takes us back to the reason for the beginning. Death is inevitable, pain feels insurmountable, but grief is survivable.

Survivable because we don’t do it alone. Ever.

Blakni Riley is well acquainted with the one, two sucker punches called grief and loss.   Yanked unwillingly into the ring after yet another death, she was confronted with her beliefs about Christ. She dared to pursue God based on Who He said He is and is now actively responding to her call to minister to other wounded hearts to share her message of His Faithfulness. Connect with Blakni on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/blakniriley/ Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/blakni https://www.facebook.com/athousandthoughtsbyblakni and on her website: athousandthoughtsbyblakni.com.

We thank you, Blakni, for sharing your heart and your Testimony of GOD’s love and grace in your life. Your contribution to Testimony Thursday this month is well appreciated!

You are loved to Heaven and Back, Blakni ~~

LindaRJohnson, TitusTwo Visionary

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