Thursday, January 20, 2022

A Helpful Way To Review God's Faithfulness in Past Moments


By: Donna Bucher

“Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen. He named it Ebenezer, saying, “Thus far the Lord has helped us.”

1 Samuel 7:12


Delighted with the view of a fresh new year before me, thoughts of doubt tarnish the brightness. Despite tracing God’s faithful hand through the past year, my review also reveals hardship and personal failure.

Each year radiates God’s faithfulness; but the shadows have me second guessing his continued faithfulness in the unknowns ahead.


How can a retrospective view give me the confident hope needed for trusting God for the new path ahead?


As a magnificent shaded path lined with stately oaks, a glance backward reveals a beauty unseen, while traversing the path. Only a retrospective view gifts the treasure of the whole journey.


Looking back through the perspective of God’s faithfulness, exposes the strong pillars of God’s lovingkindness, mercy and provision all along the path. Some embraced in the moment, while others wholly unnoticed; clouded by suffering.


Lingering, I find joy in the journey. Shared joy with others, joy in new growth and joy in the confirmation of God’s sovereignty covering every part of my path.


Yet, my survey reveals my failures in loving God, husband, family, others along my path. My eye drifts over temptations, sin and overwhelming spiritual battles. Bravely I review defeats; and savor victories.


All while following the golden thread of God’s faithfulness interwoven throughout; strengthening, redeeming and transforming my life.


Thus far the Lord has helped us. These words compel a look backward towards the many ways God provided, showed mercy, stood faithful. But these few words also point forward.


1 Samuel 7 reminds us, the Israelites faced battles and defeat. Continued uprising by the Philistines brought discouragement. But Samuel the prophet urged the people to repent and remove the idols from the land. He prayed God’s protection upon the people, and for his entire lifetime the hand of the Lord defeated the Philistines.


Samuel raised a memorial and reminded the people, “Thus far the Lord has helped us”. In essence he told them, look back and see God’s faithful hand, then look forward strengthened by the promise of God’s faithfulness for the future.


While a practice of viewing the past year through the lens of God’s faithfulness equips you for moving into the unknowns of a new year, the same practice fortifies your faith at other times.


Imagine meditating on God’s faithfulness “thus far” at the close of each month. How about a Friday “Happy Hour” ritual of soaking in God’s faithfulness at the close of your week? And consider one of the best remedies for anxiety at bedtime: a careful review of God’s faithfulness throughout your day.

Viewing the events of your month, week or day with a backward glance tracing the hand of God in your blessings, trials, defeats and victories curbs fear of the unknown, infuses hope into hard situations and fosters repentance and spiritual maturity.


Equipped for facing each new beginning in your life strengthens your trust in and submission to God’s sovereignty in uncertain times.


Then go one step further. Imagine the impact on others practicing the same principle corporately. What if you looked back over the past year, month, week or day tracing God’s faithfulness as a couple, family, small group, team, or women’s ministry?


Just as taking time for a retrospective view of my year encouraged me with God’s numerous blessings and joys, it revealed God’s Presence with me in suffering and on the hard paths. I saw His mercy, forgiveness and redemption in the defeats, all breathing Light into the dark, weary places, paving future uncertainties with hope.


We have the ability for breathing the true Hope of God’s faithfulness not only into our own journey, but into the journey of others.


“Thus far the Lord has helped us”, reminds us our journey yet remains unfinished. Each year, month, week or day, God’s faithfulness in moments past points us to the promise of a glory yet to be revealed.

The treasure of God’s faithfulness extends beyond this life journey. Because He has helped us thus far, we have the assurance He will see us through to eternity with him.

Find more encouragement and FREE Resources at Serenity in Suffering!


If you enjoyed this post, please share on social media with the buttons below!

Photo from



  1. Oh I am so thankful for God's faithfulness! ♥

    1. Couldn't we just sit with that each day to find encouragement for what lay before us?

  2. I try to remember this verse when in the midst of a challenging time. "Thus far" reminds me that the Lord will yet be with me. He hasn't brought us thus far to leave us now. This was wonderful encouragement!

    1. Thank you, Joanne for YOUR encouragement! I admit I hadn't seen this until recently, but it truly gave me much hope for facing the future!


Thank you for stopping by, we love hearing from you. Please feel free to contact us with any prayer requests or questions by commenting below or emailing us at the About Us page.