I Can Do All Things

woman reading the bible

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Phil. 4:13).

This Scripture is dear to my heart. In times of great stress, the Lord always brings it to mind, and it brings me comfort and hope.

Mission Trip Surprises

Every year my church sends out missionaries to go to Third World countries. I happen to be one of the youngest missionaries my church has sent, and I try to go on each and every missionary trip. This summer, I was able to go to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Our plan was to go to the villages and schools to share how powerful and wonderful God is and how Jesus died for our sins.

Keep in mind we had been preparing stories, songs, and our testimonies for over six months specifically for this reason. We had no idea that the location we were going to was Muslim territory. We could not even mention Jesus’ name. This was very stressful for us because we did not know how to share the word of God without mentioning His son. Another problem we had to face was the size of the schools. We thought the schools would have around 150–200 students. Turns out, the schools had around 700 kids.

The team started to become weary and a little discouraged, so I stepped up and became a leader. I could not let the others know that I was just as worried as they were. I had to show them I was emotionally stable so they would remain positive. My positivity became so overwhelming my team thought I was a little crazy. They asked me why I was not worried about this situation, and I simply stated Philippians 4:13: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Health Surprises

Philippians 4:13 is also important to me because four years ago, I had major brain surgery to remove a tumor the size of a tennis ball.

It started with a headache. After a month, it went from headache to migraine. Then it started to become worse and worse, until I could not take it anymore. My parents would take me to the doctors, but I would always come back with the same results, “sinus infection.”

I was getting ready to go to my band concert the night my parents and I found out about the tumor. My mom was combing my hair when she noticed that my forehead was protruding. She said that I looked like the character from Star Trek. Instantly, my mom rushed me to the hospital. The first thing they gave me was a CT scan. They said they saw a mass but they needed a closer look. So I had an MRI.

While we were waiting for the results, at around 1:00 a.m. the nurse burst into the room yelling “We gotta get you out of here!” At first, I honestly thought she had the wrong room but she did not. They rushed me to ICU. A nurse then came in my room explaining to me what was going to happen. “We are going to shave your hair off in the front, cut your scalp from side to side, cut your skull, remove the tumor, replace your skull with a plate, then staple you back up.” This was would all happen at 6:00 a.m. that same morning.

The week after surgery it was so hard for me to get back into life but I managed to pull through. I kept remembering that I could do all things through Christ who strengthens me. I was supposed to be homeschooled for a year, but I went back to school three months after my surgery.

This whole experience changed my family’s and my outlook on life. We now understand that a loved one can leave your life in the blink of an eye, so we should appreciate them for the time being.

Life will always give us surprises. In the middle of the surprise, we can choose to be stressed or we can choose to remember God’s promises. I hope you will remember His promises to give you strength.

Dominique Dupar is a 2019 National Acteens Panelist. She has traveled abroad on missions trips, ministered in her own community, and is active in choir and drama ministries. Dominique is from West Covina, California.




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