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Turn the Page
By Joel Osteen - Jul 13, 2012
A while back, I met a sharp young couple with three small children from New Orleans. They had lost everything during Hurricane Katrina. The house that they had worked so hard for was swept away along with their furniture, possessions and car. They made it out of the city with just the clothes on their backs. A rescue bus had dropped them off at the Houston Astrodome. One of the couples from Lakewood Church, who was volunteering, reached out to them and helped them find an apartment and get back on their feet.

The man told how he was the first one in his family to ever own a home, and the first one to ever graduate from college. Their future was bright. Everything was going well. But when Hurricane Katrina hit, it just took the wind out of their sails.

Since they didn't have a car at the time, another couple from Lakewood would pick them up every Sunday and bring them to church. They would hear about how God created us to be victors and not victims, and how God will pay us back double for our trouble. Every week, this couple began to shake off self-pity and got a fresh, new vision for life.

Recently, they brought pictures of the new house where they just moved. He told about the new job he now has making better money. In New Orleans, they had an older home that needed remodeling. They were happy with it. They were grateful. But here, God blessed them with a brand new house. Before, they had hand-me-down furniture, but God blessed them with brand new furniture. Before, their children went to an okay school, but here, they go to an excellent school. What happened? They kept moving forward. Instead of holding on to bitterness, questions and self-pity, they turned the page and walked into that flourishing finish.

Always remember, when you go through disappointments or setbacks, God still has a good plan for you. Shake off bitterness. Shake off self-pity. Say to yourself, "This setback is not the end; it's a new beginning." Trust that God is working behind the scenes on your behalf. Seek Him, follow His leading and move forward into the flourishing finish He has for your future!

"For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome" (Jeremiah 29:11, AMP).
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