What’s Next?

The righteous flourish like the palm tree and grow like a cedar in Lebanon. They are planted in the house of the Lord. . . . They still bear fruit in old age; they are ever full of sap and green, to declare that the Lord is upright.

— Psalm 92:12-15 ESV

During the stock market crash of 1929, Laura Ingalls Wilder lost what little money she had managed to save from a life of teaching and farming. Well into her sixties, she didn’t know what to do next. Some said she was too old to start over. Some believed she was done for. But not Laura. When her daughter suggested she do something different and write a book, she gave it her all. Her family’s story of homesteading in the late 1800s became an eight-book series beginning with Little House in the Big Woods. Laura Ingalls Wilder went on to become an American treasure, her story launching a beloved television show.

If you’re experiencing a disappointing setback, perhaps you’re asking what next? A further peek into Laura’s life gives us a glimpse into how God can work in ours.

As Laura struggled to keep a roof over her family’s head, she developed a strong work ethic, the ability to improvise and a deep reliance on her faith. These roots were so deep that when she lost her money, she was not destitute. She still possessed the life-sustaining gifts she’d learned from the Bible. God had equipped her to successfully pivot. And it was in the change that He revealed His true purpose for her life.

If we’ve planted ourselves in the truths of God’s Word, the secret to surviving unexpected setbacks is already within us. The lessons learned from God’s faithfulness through our struggles give us the strength to move forward and take on new challenges with courage.

Today’s One Thing

Take inventory of your struggles. What have you learned? What skills have you acquired? If your roots are shallow, sink them deeper. Spend an extra thirty minutes in God’s Word today.

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