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How big does the storm in your life have to get for you to take your eyes off of Christ and put them on your circumstance? Although God may not respond to your prayer the way you thought he should, that surely does not mean that he failed you. Your cries in the night for help are not going unanswered for they are always heard by a God who knows how to provide for your need. He has created a course for your life and the twists and turns you must take are not meant to hinder you but rather to get you ready for something far greater. Scripture is filled with verses where God’s strength is revealed in those who trusted him.
We read in Exodus in the Old Testament where the Israelites were led on a forty-year journey in the desert to get to the land God promised to give them. But because their hearts were hardened and unbelieving, God directed them the long way around. His plan was to give them peace from their enemies and a land that was overflowing with every good thing. However, most of them did nothing but grumble and gripe to God. Their faith was not in God but focused instead on only that which their eyes could see. They did not have faith that God could give them what he promised though every day he provided them with all that they needed. It was for that reason most of them died before they ever got to the land. They thought the giants in the land were bigger than their God! They were dead wrong. Only Joshua and Caleb had faith enough to trust God and they led their people to win over the enemy in the land given them.
In Genesis, Joseph was thrown into a pit by his brothers and then sold into slavery. As dark as it was in that pit, God was using this injustice against Joseph to get him ready to rule in the palace of Egypt! Joseph had to travel as a slave in chains to Egypt. He was sold to a commander there named Potiphar and forced to work in his house. Joseph then was thrown into prison after being falsely accused of a crime. Here is a man who went from the pit, to chains, to slave and then to prison. Where was his God? As painful as it was for Joseph to endure all this, God was using this trial as training. He was equipping this young man to be the top royal commander second only to Pharaoh. That was quite an elevation for just a young shepherd boy.
The truth is that God will not promote you to a higher calling without first equipping you to succeed. The pain that you are experiencing is the chisel God is using to perfect his plan for you. You are literally becoming a work of art in the kingdom of God! Your struggles never had any power to destroy you. God knows well how to cause all things to work in harmony with the purpose he has ordained for you. All of your troubles are unfolding into his perfect plan to bring you to victory. You are not going to lose this battle if you can keep your eyes on Christ and in his mighty power.
Though you can get weary as the pain of your situation overwhelms you, there is hope knowing that there is a divine purpose for your momentary problems. It should help you to know that God saw these stumbling blocks in your path before you were born. He could have led you around them but instead he has chosen to use them to make you stronger as he takes you over and above in strength and glory. His plan is to make you royalty in a kingdom that will never end. It was for this exact purpose that Christ died so that you might have an abundant life even while facing the wind and the waves of the raging sea of life.
My prayer is that you understand that all God allows in your life, he allows for a specific purpose. He will never send you alone in the battle for he is always with you. Nothing can defeat you. Your marriage problems, health issues, financial crisis or any struggle you face cannot keep his purpose for you from being fulfilled. The days remaining in this perishing world are numbered and known by God. He sees the beginning and the end and all that goes on in between. He is with you right now. You must never let the lies of the enemy make you feel defeated. If you are a child of God, that can never happen! Don’t be like the Israelites wandering in the desert who did not have faith that God could take them where he promised. God can and will do abundantly more than anything you can ask or imagine!
Cease striving, my friends, the battle is won. The enemy knows it and you need to know it too. If your trust is in Christ, he already has your situation worked out. All you have left to do is to have faith and take him at his word!
Dear Lord, I pray that those who are facing trials and pain in their lives right now may know that you are working them out for a purpose that is good. Help them to stand in faith through this storm knowing that you are with them to the end. Amen
Fear is a lie from hell
One of the greatest weapons that the enemy uses against us is doubt. The devil himself knows the truth that believers are victors and mighty warriors in the army of God. He knows that God has a plan for us that cannot be stopped by anything or anyone. That means not by our weaknesses, not by our rebellion, not by our past and certainly not by the enemy whose power was overcome by the cross of Jesus Christ!
The strength to walk in victory comes with a realization that God’s power will always be enough. If you can understand that his plan was made long before we were created and he foreknew the struggles that we would face, then you can trust that he can rescue you whatever your situation. Our Savior knew of the plans that the enemy had to destroy us and he knew how to take us through to victory. A painful trial or circumstance in our life has no power except that which you give it. If God already had knowledge of what you would have to endure and gave his power to overcome all things, why would you ever allow your problem to make you anxious? When you give in to fear, you are giving in to the lies from a defeated enemy!
You have to know who your God is. You must seek for an understanding of his love that covers everything. There is no bondage that can stand against the cross. Jesus finished the work of salvation and he is alive and intercedes for us every day. Christ will always be sovereign over all that comes against us. Everything in all of creation must submit to him! Anything that he allows in your life is for a purpose and must conform to the plan that he has for your life. Remember that God made us into his image from the dust. He knows where you are and he knows your pain. He created the 70 million trillion stars and calls them out by name each night. There is no place you can go that can make him forget you. The hairs of your head are numbered by him and he saw the length of your days on this earth before one of them came to be. There is nothing in your life that is impossible for him.
It is not always easy to trust when you are in a battle with the spiritual forces of evil that fill this earth. The days are dismal and filled with more problems. Financial difficulties are hitting everyone. Who can think about the future when it is hard enough to get through a day? Yet that position is right where you need to be. Christ will see you through all things but he will take you through one day at a time, sometimes minute to minute. You won’t be able to see where he is taking you so you must trust him with all of your heart. Jesus did not die to lose you now! Beloved, you will never be destroyed by this lost and crumbling world for you will be taken above it by the Spirit of Christ who lives in you. You aren’t standing on the perishing earth, you are standing on the Promise which is Jesus Christ!
My friends, I want you to understand one very important truth. It does not matter where you are, what problems you have or how low you have fallen. If your hope is in the cross of Jesus, you will come through every battle as a conqueror. The victory has already been won. Never let the enemy or your painful situation convince you that God’s power is not enough. It is more than enough. The enemy of your soul knows this. You need to know it also. If you ever believe anything, believe this: JESUS WILL NEVER FAIL YOU!
Dear Lord, I know the times are hard and people are struggling with the problems that this dark world brings. I pray that you will open their eyes and affirm in their heart the truth that your power and love will take them through all things no matter how impossible it may seem. Jesus, help them to know that you are the light which has conquered the darkness. Let them know that whatever illness, bondage, marriage problem, financial issue or heartache they have, you always have a way to give them your peace. You alone paid the price for our victory. Jesus, I thank you for being all that we need. Amen