A man dealing with despair confessed to a Bible teacher, “My life is really in bad shape.” “How bad?” asked the teacher. Burying his head in his hands, the man moaned, “I’ll tell you how bad—I’ve got nothing left but God.”

The man thought that life had dealt him a bad hand. He didn’t understand that “but God” is an oft-repeated comforting expression found in the Bible.

Here’s a sampling:

• “You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good” (Genesis 50:20).

• “David now stayed in the strongholds of the wilderness and in the hill country of Ziph. Saul hunted him day after day, but God didn’t let Saul find him” (1 Samuel 23:14).

• “My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever” (Psalm 73:26).

• “[Jesus] said, ‘Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible” (Matthew 19:26).

• “You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead. And we are witnesses of this fact!” (Acts 3:15).

• “Most people would not be willing to die for an upright person . . . . But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners” (Romans 5:7-8).

There are times that life may seem to be hopeless. Perhaps you feel that way today. But God is there and He has not forsaken you.

Pastor and writer Ray Stedman wrote: “Whenever we face an impossible challenge or obstacle, we must remember those two words: ‘But God . . . ’ His power is limitless. His character is dependable. His promises are sure. Whatever He says, He will do.”

When you find that you have nothing left but God, remember: God is all you need.

NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: Exodus 2:11-25