Let’s face it, friends, things get tough.

Life happens; sometimes, our best-laid plans are blown around like tumbleweeds on the Colorado prairie. 

I know. I’ve been there. Fear creeps in when the strong winds of trouble blow through, scrambling and tossing my life. Often as these times come upon me, I get caught up in the hardness of the current problems and forget all the good in my life.

As Christians, we’re not promised a life of ease.

We’re promised love, redemption, and eternal life. So what are we to do when the ill winds ravage our lives?

One of the first things I learned from the Bible after I became a Christian was from Joshua. In Chapter 7, the Israelites are turning back to the Lord, but as they are, the Philistines draw near, intent on battling the Israelites. The Lord thundered from the sky, which got the Philistines all discombobulated. The Israelites pursued and were able to beat them. 

After the battle, Joshua made a stack of stones and called it Ebenezer saying, “Thus far the Lord has helped us.” 

I love this passage for a couple of reasons. 

First of all, it reminds me of the Lord’s protection. If we turn our hearts and lives to Him, he will help us.

The second reason I love this passage is the idea of Ebenezers—the intentional taking account of the things the Lord has done for us. When the waves of life threaten to overwhelm me, I remember all the times God has helped me.

So, how do you create your Ebenezers?

I’ve found that having something tangible is the best way for me. Without something to remind me, it is easy to listen to the lies that come at me during these times. You know the ones I’m talking about—the voices that tell you you’re not good enough, you’re alone, and life will never get better. Those lies. Ebenezers remind us what is true about the Lord.

An Ebenezer is anything you choose to be a physical reminder of what the Lord has done for you. A friend keeps a shadow box with little compartments where she places items significant to the times the Lord helped her. I have other friends who chronicle them in journals. 

Personally, I’ve kept my Ebenezers in several ways. Sometimes I journal about them, but I tend to find things to keep around me. For instance, I have a red heart stone paperweight on my desk. This Ebenezer reminds me of a particularly tough job situation God brought me through. Another is a penny with a heart cut out of the middle that I keep on my keychain. Or the stuffed dog I purchased in a gift shop during a retreat that I left with peace in my heart. Guess what his name is!?! Yup, Ebenezer.

The thing is, there’s no right or wrong way to keep them. Whatever works for you is the best way. The important thing is to have them for those tough times when you need a physical reminder that, thus far, the Lord has helped you.


Let’s chat: When has the Lord helped you? How do you remember that when tough times come?


Image by Austin Neill on Unsplash