Over the last few weeks the Wilson household has faced several huge challenges. In today’s column I’m not going to talk about the challenges themselves – that will be for a later column — but rather I want to talk about what I have learned from them.

First and foremost, I have learned that it’s not enough to say that God is in control. You have to mean it. And that’s the hard part. Anyone who knows me knows that I am a Christian and that I try to live for God every day. But, I’m human and make mistakes and can never be good enough to deserve what God has given me in this life.

I always say that God is in control but as soon as a major challenge comes along it seems that I want to wrest that control from Him and take over or worry. You can’t have it both ways. Either God is in control of your lives or you have to quit saying that He is.

We are fallible and weak and it’s hard not to worry when you face life’s difficulties. But, at the end of the day, you have to give it over to God and let Him take care of the problem – no matter what it is. A friend told me the other day that God wouldn’t bring you this far just to leave you. That hit me right between the eyes and was what I needed to hear at that moment. It’s funny how people are put in your path for a reason.

Something else that I have learned over the last month or so is that sometimes you have to reach such a low point in life that there is nowhere to go but up. And, that is when God can become the most real to you. When you are faced with what you think is an overwhelming hurdle God is there to carry you over it.  

I was sharing with another friend and said that I had always been told that God never gives you more than you can handle. That friend told me that I was wrong – that God never gives you more than He can handle. Again, the right comment at the right time.

When you hit that lowest point – and we all do at some time in our lives – that is when what is most important to you becomes abundantly clear. For me that is God and my family (and family is not only those that are related to you by blood – you know what I mean by that). When you strip everything else away in life God and family are really all that truly matters.
We get so consumed by our daily lives and we make all these grand plans for what we are going to do tomorrow, next week or even next year. And in the midst of all those grand plans we forget who we are here to serve. We worry way too much about what other people think and way too little about what God thinks.  

Something else I have learned is that when things aren’t going well we tend to ask “why me?”. That’s pretty egotistical – why not me? Life is full of challenges and we shouldn’t expect other people to be the ones to face them. Christians have never been promised a life free of problems. What we have been promised is a place to turn to for comfort and assurance when those problems come our way.  

And, finally (at least for this column), I have learned that as humans, when we start to rise from those darkest moments we tend to go right back to the way we were. When we are at our lowest we depend on God the most and when things start looking up we want to put God back on the shelf until we need Him again. That’s not how it’s supposed to work.  

Sometimes God has to take us to our knees for us to truly understand just how awesome a God we really have and how much we need His strength in our lives. My hope and prayer is that I never again put God back on the shelf to be pulled out when I think I need Him because, for me, I have come to realize that I need Him every moment of my life.

Kevin Wilson writes a weekly column for the Daily News.