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How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and every day have sorrow in my heart? (Psalm 13:2)
Remembering that God is sovereign while we are in the battles of life can be very difficult. Probably the last thing you think about as you suffer in a trial is that God is working all things out for your good. When you are overwhelmed with problems, it takes all the strength you have to just barely whisper a prayer.
My friends, I write this message to again empathize with so many of you that are feeling literally torn apart by painful trials. I struggle also. We are definitely living in a time of darkness. The laws of God simply don’t matter as the evil spirit of self-righteousness fills the hearts of most. Satan’s main weapon of attack is to destroy families. He works to divide and conquer. If he can break up loved ones, he can use their pain to do his work. I cannot believe how extensively marriages are ending. A marriage vow has just become another way of saying, “I’ll love you until I don’t”. The promise made before God is simply swept under the rug and forgotten. How sad that we have strayed so far.
We read in 2 Timothy 3 that there will be terrible times in the last days. Paul describes a time when people will become lovers of themselves and lovers of money. He goes on to say that they will be lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God and have form of godliness but deny its power. While sin has always been in this world, the extent of evil to which Paul is speaking is much greater. Paul was warning of a time when self-love and entitlement would rule over this earth and God would be considered an intrusion. We are in that prophecy now! Is there any wonder that this whole world is suffering financially, physically and under the devastation of earthquakes, floods and storms of every kind? Judgment is upon us! Wars and weapons of mass destruction are being prepared for a battle that could conceivably destroy every living thing. It is evident that the rulers and powers of darkness have geared up efforts to unleash a prodigious force of wickedness on this earth to take down those who are unprepared.
Yet, despite all that is going on in this lost world, there is always hope for those who trust in the finished work of Christ. No situation and trial you face will ever be stronger than the blood of Christ that was shed ensuring that you will always have the future he planned for your life. Sadly, many believers accept the lies of the enemy when a crisis hits instead of holding on in faith. The Apostle Paul tells us in Romans 12:12, “Be joyful in hope , patient in affliction, faithful in prayer”. In every battle you must be joyful, patient and faithful knowing without a doubt that God is not going to fail you. You are not alone and the power of Christ that resides in you is greater than the pain you are facing. You have a Living Hope that reigns eternal.
Until the day I die, I will proclaim the truth that Christ is enough for everything you must endure on this earth. Though we all grow weary at times, God knows how to rescue his people in times of need. Christ has promised us his peace despite the trouble in our lives. It is a peace that defies understanding knowing in your heart that God is orchestrating his divine will through every struggle. Each heartache and trial you face is an opportunity for God to reveal more of himself to you. The purpose and plan are guiding you on the path of your destiny!
You will always gain freedom as you surrender up your power to his. There is a short poem written by L.E. Maxwell in his book, Born Crucified, that makes this point:
“Make me a captive Lord, and then I shall be free. Force me to render up my sword and I shall conqueror be. My will is not my own, til Thou has made it Thine. If it would reach the monarch’s throne, it must its crown resign!”
We aren’t always going to be in control of our circumstances. There will be times when all we can do is surrender them to Christ and trust that he will work them out for our good. It may be scary to wait in the deep water for Jesus to bring you to safety but that is exactly what you must do! Get your eyes off of the sharks in the waters of life and the storm clouds that are brewing. They are under the authority of God, their Master, and cannot harm you. You may feel weary and alone in the dark sea of trouble but you are not alone and you are never without his strength!
I pray that those who feel God does not hear their prayers will come to know the truth of this message. Don’t let your weariness cloud your judgment. If you belong to Christ, legions of his angels surround you right at this moment. There is not a tear he does not see nor a broken heart he cannot mend! Your lonely whispers are heard. You have been set apart and made ready for him. While you wait in expectation of Christ, understand that your calling is secure. As a child of the King, you have already been declared royalty. Stand firm in your faith for the army of the living God is with you.
“And to the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.” ( 1 Peter 5:10)
Be in peace, my friends. I am praying for you.
Probably one of the hardest steps of faith is believing that God hears and will help us when we call on him in prayer. We are still living in a world that has dimensions and boundaries and our finite minds have limits to our understanding in difficult matters. We therefore need a measure of faith to see past that which is seen and go deeper into that which is unseen. The only way to please God is by trusting him despite the storms that we face in a world that is literally being destroyed by sin. Although it is not visible to our eyes right now, there is a battle that is taking place all around us in the heavenly realms. Darkness is covering the horizons in every corner of this world as evil is seeking to destroy everything in God’s creation. So when we are faced with a painful trial, it is easier to believe what we can see than what we can’t see. Yet, it is at our lowest point of struggle that we must lift our eyes in prayer and believe that our God is not going to let us be devoured by the enemy of destruction.
It may seem impossible to live with a heart that is breaking but God has promised us in his word that He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds” (Psalm 147:3) He is not slow to help and he will never fail you even when it seems that you are being crushed by the weight of your pain. If you could see the very real battle that is taking place all around you, you would understand that you are being guarded by the forces of heaven. Every step you take as a believer is guided by the hand of God who knows the path you must take to victory. Every prayer that you present to Christ is heard and he knows what is right and perfect for you. Your whole life is before his eyes and he is answering you in ways that for now you may not understand. The solid truth is that Christ never stops working all things out for your good! When you lift up your prayers and petitions, you are surrendering all of your struggles to the will of God. You are seeking his strength and his power to help you stand in faith believing the God who saw your unformed body in the womb and who numbered all of your days before even one of them came to be. Nothing of your life is hidden from him. Your fear and despair in a trial stem from not understanding the power of God and his unfailing love for you. Never will his eyes leave you for one second! Why can you not understand that you are worrying about things that Jesus already has worked out?
I have been through a lot of pain in my life but I can now rest in the fact that the purpose and plan God has for my life cannot be stopped. I can trust that he is right next to me when I pray and that he always hears. No pain can consume my life because my God will always be bigger that anything I face. I believe that God will go ahead of me in every battle and lead me into victory against my enemies. I know that God is faithful and that I can take him at his word. My future is in his hands and he is the joy of my life. At the moment of Christ’ death, the temple veil that enclosed the holy of holies was torn signifying our new access to the throne of God in every prayer! Believers are right there with Christ in every petition that is made to him. The devil can’t stop our prayers nor can he hinder God from answering them.
My dear friends, I say all this to encourage you through the trials you are facing. You can still have a future despite a broken marriage or a relationship that is not working out. Your financial struggles are not going to be forever. Job situations and serious health issues are still under the sovereignty of God. My greatest lesson in God’s love came when I trusted him at a time when I had no strength of my own in an impossible situation. His power is greater than a painful struggle or addiction. His strength is perfected in any weakness that we surrender to him. We can trust our God in every area of life and we can trust him in death. There is nothing good that he will ever withhold from those who belong to him. Never let the silence make you think that God is not doing something for your cause. Remember that Elijah had to wait on the mountain top for the quiet whisper of God after he faced the powerful wind, the earthquake and the great fire. No matter how or when he chooses to do it, never doubt that God will show up and fight against that which is coming against you!
Dear Lord, I am lifting up those who are going through a storm in life that is making them weary. They want to believe that you will show up in time to help them but the enemy has been filling their minds with lies. I pray that you will give them your peace that passes understanding and open their hearts to know that you are with them right now. They don’t have to see you or feel you to know that you are there. Show them that their prayers are heard by you and you will resolve the issues they face. Let them know that you will never leave them to fight against the battles of this world alone. I pray that they will listen for that small whisper of hope that you are ready to give them. Lord Jesus, I believe your promises never fail. Amen
Let us be thankful and so worship God acceptably (Hebrews 12:28)
To those of you who visit this site during the holy season of peace, I wish you blessings and happiness. But, I know that it is difficult for some of you to have a spirit of joy during these holidays because you are experiencing struggles and pain in your life. It is not easy to praise God when your world is crumbling around you, but it is then that you must. All that God allows for you will always be for your best interest. I have struggled many times with my problems and yet not one of them defeated me, even when I felt I was literally drowning in a sea of trouble. The truth is that God’s purpose for allowing you to endure this pain is always to bring you higher and to have a greater knowledge of the God you serve. Believers will always find that God was with them in the midst of every storm they faced.
The Apostle Paul knew first hand that when your faith was in Christ, all things that you endured were allowed by Christ for a reason. Because of his faith, he knew that even though he was suffering in jail for witnessing to others, Jesus had a divine plan to work it out for Paul’s good and for the kingdom. Paul understood that nothing was going to happen to him apart from the will of God. Paul wrote:
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:4-7)
God knows what you need and he is able to provide for all that is good for you. So many times you may forget how many things God has taken you through. When a trial in your life takes you down, your attitude in dealing with it depends on whether you trust that God will take you through it. Our hope is secure because God’s promises never fail. That does not stop the devil from trying to fill you mind with lies and fear. Don’t give in to them for they come from an enemy who was defeated by the cross of Christ. All things will work out in God’s way and in his timing. He is not going to let you be destroyed by the storms of this world.
Paul endured a hardship in prison but his God never left him. He knew that he would suffer for a while for the purpose that God planned but that he could not be destroyed by this time of pain – he could only be made better and stronger! That is what happens when you can give thanks in ALL things including those trials that you don’t understand why God would allow. You can give praise and thanksgiving in all things knowing without a doubt that God’s grace is the force that will take you to victory.
You may be feeling weary and overwhelmed right now because your situation may seem hopeless. That is not true. Nothing is beyond the power of God to work out. There are no impossible situations with God. He who spoke the worlds into existence and who breathed into the dust and made man has no boundaries or limitations. He can do all things and he will move heaven and earth in his perfect plan for you. You just need to trust him and put your complete faith in him.
It doesn’t matter what you have done in your life or how far you have run from God. The only thing that matters is that he wants you with him. You have tried every other way to bring happiness in your life but all you were left with was the consequence of bad decisions. Only the path that God set for you will give you peace and joy despite your struggles.
This holiday season and always, give God praise and honor for all things . Be thankful for what God has given you thus far and put your trust in the future he planned for your life long before you were born.
This season of peace and joy is also a time when many people are struggling with finances, marriages failing, health issues, sin bondages and thoughts of depression. I am praying for all who are in pain right now. I pray that you will make your presence known to them in a very real way. Please help them to know that you are going to be with them in their struggle and will take them to victory. My prayer, dear Jesus, is that you will meet them where they are right now and take them to your peace. I pray that everyone who is overwhelmed and defeated to know that your perfect plan for their life will not fail. Most importantly, I pray that each one who visits here will know the depth of the love that you have for them. If there are any who do not know you as Savior and LORD, I pray that you will unveil their eyes and give them the knowledge of who you are. I pray this in the precious name of Jesus. Amen
FOR I KNOW WHOM I HAVE BELIEVED ( 2 Tim.1:12)
Dear friends and visitors to this blog,
I want everyone who comes to this site to know that I have a burden for those who are in pain, feeling troubled and who come looking for a message from God. I never cease praying for those who have asked for prayer. I take all of your prayer requests very seriously and they stay on my heart. And God cares for each of you through your pain. He is not going to leave you in your struggle.
Remember that no matter what you are going through, God will always be bigger and he cares! He has a way out and above every single situation that you go through. To those who have put their trust in the finished work of Christ at the cross, your future is sealed and the enemy cannot steal it away. Don’t let any of the devil’s lies and frustrations make you doubt God’s perfect plan for your life. If you could see with spiritual eyes, you would know that if God is allowing a trial in the life of a believer, he has a plan to not only take you through it but to make you better for having gone through it.
Most importantly, I want you to remember that no situation is impossible for the true God who spoke the worlds into existence! Never let anyone tell you that you circumstance is beyond all help. That is a lie. There is nothing that God cannot and will not do for those who belong to him.
I care very deeply about all whom God sends to my site. You matter here! It was no coincidence that you stopped by for God has a message in one of these articles just for you. He is the one who has inspired these truths for me to write.
God bless you for now. Stay in peace and take your stand in the battle. Your God is very near and he is fighting for you!
You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you. (Isaiah 26:3)
It is hard to release all of our hopes and fears and trust that God has a better way for our lives. When you try to work things out as the world does, you are headed for failure. Charles Spurgeon once wrote: “You cannot grow in grace to any high degree while you are conformed to the world“. That which you won’t surrender to God will be the foothold that the enemy uses to take you down. All that you have that is good has been given you by God. There is nothing that you can keep except that which you give up.
Jesus calls for us to be transformed by the renewing of our minds and yet that is very difficult to do when you let the influences of this lost world cloud your judgment. The darkness of these present times can fill you with fear when it seems like God isn’t showing up in time to help you through a crisis. Some people are suffering with the pain of a serious or terminal illness. Many are facing monumental financial difficulties as they battle to survive past the list of endless bills. Marriages are under attack as Satan has targeted families for destruction. Drugs and alcohol are literally robbing people of their future. Pornography is a deadly addiction that poisons and imprisons its victims. Sadly, lies from hell are being traded for the truth by the lost everywhere. Many in our country and in the world are now accepting evil as good.
Yet, despite the battles that rage all around, Jesus promised believers that he would fill them with the peace that surpasses all understanding. That peace only comes by trusting and following the path of Christ. You cannot seek out the riches and glory of this world and expect that God’s peace will reign in your heart. I can’t put it more clearly than to say outright that if you live in rebellion to God, you will never be happy! You will always be searching and never be satisfied. The true joy that comes only from a relationship with Christ is found nowhere else. Nothing that you can attain on this earth will last forever or prevent you from dying one day. But those who seek Christ and his kingdom, all that is good will be added to their life. As a believer you understand that death has no power except to release you to be with God in his kingdom forever.
While all will suffer in this life, God works everything for the good those who belong to him. The temporary struggles you face have divine ramifications as the hand of God uses them to form and shape you into the image of Jesus. We read in 1 Peter 5:10, “And the God of all grace who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast“. After you have been through your painful trial, God himself lifts you up and restores you to wholeness. You can’t lose in the battle you are in so hang on and know the power that lives in you. Never surrender your joy no matter how dark your situation may appear. God always has a way to take you through it if you will believe and wait on his timing God ‘s power is more than enough for all that you need. You should keep that truth in your heart!
Dear Lord, I know that many are struggling in areas of their lives and they wonder if you truly care about what they are going through. I pray that you draw near to them in their pain and give them the strength they need to believe that you will not fail them. May you give them a very real sense of your peace as you work out all their difficulties and make them strong, firm and steadfast in their faith. I pray this in the power of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen
Have you ever been in a painful trial in life which made you feel like you were all alone? The storms you face in this world can sometimes make you feel isolated and without hope. And, although well-meaning friends want to help you, there often is little that they can do. You really want to believe that God is with you in that battle, but that may be hard to do when the enemy surrounds you on all sides! When you come to these lonely places, it is then that you must take all thoughts captive to the truth of the promises of Christ!
In Scripture, David told King Saul that he would go against the giant Goliath who was threatening to kill the Israelites. Although he was only a young man alone, David knew that the force and strength of his God would be with him. As David ran toward the giant armed only with a sling and 5 stones, he was confident that he would be victorious against the enemy – and he was. David won this battle before he even started because his hope was steadfast in his faith that God would not fail him. He never hesitated by allowing worry to have entry to his mind. He knew the God that he served enough to take him at his word.
All of the battles that you face as a believer are fought on holy ground because the power of God is with you. You are in the company of the army of heavenly forces who know well how to deal with the enemy. You are never left to fight alone. As David understood that God was giving him his victory, so must you know that you are a conqueror against all that comes against you. You must never let your situation cause you to be anxious. Worry is nothing but the whispers of lies from a defeated enemy! Satan wants you to make you feel alone and hopeless so that he can get a foothold into your mind. Don’t give him access.
The truth is all the force that you need to defeat your feelings of hopelessness. Your financial struggles, marriage problems, health issues, addictions or heartaches are all under the power of a Sovereign God who knows how to take you safely through them. Your weaknesses are not hidden from the eye of an omniscient God who offers you his strength when you have none of your own. He is never limited by the scope of your impossible situation. His power is not confined to boundaries and it supersedes the scientific laws of this world. Most importantly, your painful struggle was seen by God long before you were born and he prepared a way to take you to victory. He has not forgotten you now and he never will.
It is the lonely places that put you next to the heart of your God. For it is when you have nowhere else to turn that you realize that God’s power was all that you ever needed. Jesus paid the price so that those who believed would be made more than a conqueror in all the battles of this world. Never surrender your joy no matter how bad the problems in your life seem. Though you may not understand it now, Christ is working it all out to fit into the perfect plan that he ordained for your life. The One who keeps all your tears in a bottle will not let you drown in despair. Jesus said “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. And even the very hairs on your head are numbered. So don’t be afraid: you are worth more than many sparrows”.(Matthew 10:29-31) There is nothing you must face that will not be measured and timed by God’s own hand.
Whatever is overwhelming you in your life right now has a purpose to bring you closer to God. The winds of trouble and the storms of your life must all submit to the will of God for you. Your battle will never be stronger than the refuge and strength of your God! The bible tells us, “Weeping may remain for a night, but joy comes in the morning”. (Psalm 30:5) That means that every painful struggle has a timing for it to end. And it is only then that you will understand the power of God whose love for you never failed.
I pray that those who are struggling or in a painful trial will know the peace of God that surpasses understanding. No matter what is going on in your life, please remember that it will never be bigger than your God!
It is way too hard to hold on in this perishing world by your own efforts. Anyone who is trying to do so will fail. All of our force and all of our strength comes only from our relationship with Christ who has promised to give us all that we need. It is for that reason that we can have hope knowing that our life is being worked out by divine hands!
Struggles and storms are filling the lives of everyone. No one is exempt from the dark skies that have filled this world. As time grows short, the enemy has stepped up his attacks and they are brutal. Even the strongest Christians are being tossed by the winds of trouble. There is no air, land or sea to go where the war for souls is not fiercely raging. The enemy is relentless. Yet, the truth remains that there is a place of peace to rest when we are weary from the battle. That is the hiding place of Jesus Christ and in his mighty promise.
I have never witnessed such evil and darkness as I do in this present time. Believers are experiencing testing of all kinds as they are proven to be true sons and daughters of the living God. Jesus left us a promise that needs to be understood. He said, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world!” (John 16:33) Your problems are ALL being worked out in the plan that he has set for you. Nothing you face comes as a surprise to him. You may not understand now why he is allowing you to suffer as you do, but you must continue to trust him despite what you feel. Every word in Scripture is utter truth and written for you to use as the power to stand against the attacks you face. When Jesus was tempted in the desert by Satan, he did not use physical force to defeat him. He could have turned him to ashes with just a look. Instead, he used the powerful, unfailing word of God for which Satan had no power over! Jesus wasn’t just proving his strength to the enemy, he was showing us that we also have that power to overcome all obstacles that stand in our way. As bad as it now appears, the light of Christ is still a consuming fire with power to overcome all obstacles of battle.
There are many people suffering oppressive financial problems all over this world. The forecast is bleak as homes are foreclosed and many have to do without the basic necessities to live. Marriages are collapsing like dominoes as the lie of the enemy fills homes and destroys families. Health issues are increasing as families must deal with loved ones who have serious or terminal illnesses. My heart breaks to watch so many fall into the trap of addictive substances and literally exist to get their next fix. Pornography is destroying many and making slaves to those who are caught in its deadly obsession. Not even Christians aren’t exempt from this trap.
In addition to all this, we are facing wars and threats of wars, earthquakes, severe weather conditions and pandemic diseases. Through it all we may wonder, is Christ still sovereign when bad things are happening to good people? Can we still trust God to get us through all of these problems? The answer is a resounding yes! We can still rely on God to help us no matter what is happening in this world. He will never let the faithful in him be destroyed!
Psalm 34:19 tells us, “ A righteous man may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all.” God will not fail in his promises to us. All circumstances of our lives have been predestined to work out for our good. There are no conditions that Satan puts in our lives that have power enough to take from the promise that Jesus died to give us. It may be tough for you now, but these times will not last. When the purpose for which they were allowed has been fulfilled than God will raise you above the waters and take you up the mountain of victory. You can’t lose if you keep your trust in the One who paid the price for your redemption.
The point is not whether or not you can rely on Christ to take you through these turbulent times. The truth is that you must rely on him and trust him even when all of your hope is gone. Your trials in this life are merely the workings of your transformation into the image of Christ. If God can create the heavens and the earth with just a word, he surely can move the mountains that come against your marriage, finances, health and everything else that stand in the way of what God has promised for you!
Those who wait upon the LORD will never be disappointed. God’s promise says in Psalm 72:26, ” My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” You may be down but you are not out. God still has a plan for your life. It is my prayer that those who are struggling in a trial will know that God will make a way!
Where is God in all of our struggles? We are living in unbelievably difficult days and it does not appear to be getting any better. Trying to hold on in faith while the darkness surrounds our situation can literally seem impossible. In our finite minds, it doesn’t make sense that God appears to wait so long to come to our rescue.
The pain of a trial in life can be overwhelming. A troubled marriage can turn your life upside down. Financial problems seem to have no end in sight. A serious illness can interrupt your life in a big way. Addictions to alcohol, drugs, pornography or any bondage can bring total havoc in your life. There are just too many problems to deal with as utter darkness covers the earth. Where is the peace that surpasses understanding that Jesus promised us believers? Sometimes it may take all the effort you have just to get out of bed in the morning and face life. Without a doubt, we are living in troubling times. So what can we do?
We are told in God’s word that then enemy prowls around like a roaring lion looking to devour you. He is seeking to kill, steal and destroy all that you have. But, the truth is that the enemy cannot take anything from one whose faith is in the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross. All that he can do is convince you of a lie that his power to destroy you is bigger than God’s power to rescue you. You must remember that the tomb could not hold back the Holy Spirit’s power to raise Christ from the dead and that same power is living in you! For that reason, you cannot be defeated no matter how wounded you are in the battle you are fighting. Christ has conquered death and the power of evil. Though the enemy can wage war all around you, you will not be a casualty of a battle that has already been won. Don’t look at your circumstances – look at your God! Our weakness comes when we take our eyes off the Source of our power. Jesus does not take cover in the attacks of the enemy. He is our fortress and a very present help to us. The weary can find safety in his shadow and experience peace in his never-ending love.
By knowing and understanding the God you serve, you are able to rest and trust him to get you through the storm. If Jesus tells us to take joy despite our problems, he must have a way for us to do so. We know by all that is true that God cannot lie. In every one of our troubles, God is present and working them out. You don’t have to feel him or see him working to know that he is causing all things to be used for your good. It is by faith, which is greater than silver or gold, that we trust despite our pain. My friends, you must understand that while this earth is not heaven, it is here that God is getting us ready to be royalty in a glorious place that will never end! It is difficult to endure the hardships that surround us each day, but it is not impossible. The sacrifice of Jesus on the cross gave us hope that our future is secure. If he has the hairs on your head numbered, he surely is not going to forget to help you when you need him. In his timing, you will understand that he never left you for one second! The Apostle Peter took his eyes off of Jesus when he was walking on the water and began to sink. But understand this – JESUS NEVER TOOK HIS EYES OFF OF PETER! Jesus was able to lift Peter up from the sea because his power did not cease even when Peter doubted him.
God’s love and power for you are real. If you are struggling it is because you are listening to the lies of the enemy and have taken your eyes from Christ. I know that your financial problems are real and that your marriage may be in serious trouble. All that I am saying is that God is not going to fail you. You may think he is not with you now in your pain but the truth is that he is. Even in your fear and weakness, he is not going to abandon you. His love is just so amazing that it will meet you wherever you are. He knows how to lift you from your sea of trouble and he will not let you drown. God can make a way even when there is none.
Let the amazing love that Christ has for you be your strength in the battle you are facing. Get into his word and let him fill you will the knowledge of his power so that you will not be afraid of what the future holds for you. The words that God gave to his people long ago are for you today: “For I am the LORD, your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you”. (Isaiah 41:13)
(Photo by Rob Bohning)
We are living in a season of change and a pervading darkness is rapidly filling this earth. People are struggling financially, physically and with each other as more than half of marriages end in divorce. Satan has blinded the eyes of most and it is sad to watch people caught up in the bondage of alcohol, drugs, pornography and every form of deception. Crime has increased and prisons are filled with lost souls. The truth has been compromised as the enemy seeks to blind the world and destroy it. Has he succeeded?
The Apostle Paul warns us in 2 Timothy 3 that there will be terrible times in the last days. Believers must keep watch as the enemy seeks to weaken them and make them ineffective for the kingdom. The days are growing short and our strength is only in the power of Christ who lives in us. He has promised to never leave us and to help us in time of distress. Our hope in times of testing is to magnify the Lord to see him as he truly is – which is always bigger than our problems.
Though God is always with us, we will have to suffer in this world. If it is the storms of this life that cause us to grow in our faith, then God must allow this struggle to reveal his power and give us the knowledge of who we are in Christ. His purpose and plan for our lives cannot fail. You may feel alone in your time of pain but you never are. You belong to him and he has given his angels charge over you. If you can magnify God and trust him in all things, he will prove himself faithful as he takes you through the furnace of your affliction and bring you safely to a place of his peace. He has power over all that comes against you and there is always a purpose in what he allows in your life.
The strength to hold on is having knowledge of the God who created you. His power cannot fit into the confines of our finite minds. So what is impossible for us is never impossible for God. Get hold of the fact that you aren’t going to completely understand the ways of God. Who could understand why a holy, loving God would send his only begotten Son to die for the sins of an ungrateful world? There is nothing good that you have that was not given to you by his power. Yet we constantly just dwell on the question of why God allows bad things to happen to good people! It is because this world is not heaven. This world is perishing and there will one day be an end to those who love evil. But for now, we are aliens in a lost civilization and Christ has been sent as our only hope for salvation. He has given those who believe in him the right to become joint heirs with him in a kingdom whose wonder cannot be described. As unbelievable as it sounds, many are choosing to sell eternity with Christ in absolute perfection to the highest bidder of the perishing things of this world!
Trusting that God will work everything out and give to you all that he has promised can be difficult as the shadow of the enemy permeates this earth. For that reason, it is so important that you see and understand the God who had no beginning and no end. He is the source of all that is good and he withholds nothing of benefit from those who love him. You have to know that God is bigger and stronger than all of the evil that is happening. He sent Jesus to die for you so that you will have a future with promise. He defeated death and made us more than conquerors in the battle of this world.
Remember always that the trials that assail you will one day end. God has a plan to dry your tears and give you life everlasting with more beauty than your mind can comprehend. The truth that sets you free and that gives you victory in every area of your life is the cross of Jesus Christ. Because he loves you with an everlasting love, he was willing to pay the price for your debt of sin. He doesn’t care how far you have strayed or how badly you have failed. He has a love that will cover it all.
My friends, if you are reading this message and don’t know Christ, I hope that you will seek him now and ask him to reveal himself to you. My prayers will be with you. I may not know who you are or what problems you have, but God knows your name and he knows how to rescue you. Your life matters to him. Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Light. He is stronger than the enemy and his plan for you will never fail. That is the promise he died to give you!
He has a way to take you to victory
Fear and discouragement are two of the most powerful weapons that the enemy uses to bring believers down. Although the power of Christ lives in us, the storms of life can fill us with hopelessness and anxiety as the lies of darkness attack our soul. These fiery darts of evil attack our mind to magnify our problems and diminish the power of our God. It is a lie from the depth of hell!
As difficult as it is to stand your ground in times of trouble, the fact is that Jesus is a powerful stronghold and a strong tower to run to for protection from the battle. You absolutely cannot be defeated from an enemy that has been rendered powerless through the cross of Jesus Christ. His death and resurrection finished the work of redemption and bought for us a promise of eternal life with him.
In Psalm 107:28-28 we read, “Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress. He stilled the storm to a whisper, the waves of the sea were hushed”. Jesus alone has the power to still the storms in your life and quiet the waves of your troubles. The darkness of your situation cannot diminish the light of Christ whose power has no limits. The world around you may be crumbling but God will lift you out of your difficulties and set your feet upon a rock. As you trust in him, your cries will be changed to songs of praise as you watch the right hand of God bring victory in your life and give you strength to stand in faith.
As the days grow short and evil increases, the destroyer will try to rob you of your hope. He will attempt to fill your mind with anxiousness and fear as you endure the struggles of this life. If he can discourage you with his lies, he can make you ineffective for the kingdom of God. Satan wants to make you feel defeated when Christ has made you more than a conqueror. That which comes against you is filtered through the Savior’s hand and he knows the good that he can accomplish through it. He can do what he says he can do.
There is nothing in this life that can stand against the purpose and plan God has for you. It does not matter what the doctor’s report says for God alone has determined the number of your days. He does not care about what stage your cancer is in, his power will always be greater. Your financial struggle is no match for our God who owns the world and everything in it. The pain and heartache you suffer will bring you nearer to God for he is close to the brokenhearted. He will dry your tears and give you his perfect peace if you will keep your eyes on him. God is the restorer of homes and families and he can heal your brokenness. Christ who died to give us the victory is a mighty force to be reckoned with. Years of addiction and bondage can be healed as you surrender your struggles to the nail pierced hands of Jesus. He won’t fail so you can’t fail!
In the wake of all that you are going through, never surrender to the enemy! Just trust and hold on to the nail pierced hands of Jesus who always has a plan and a promise you can trust. He is with you right now. You are never alone!
Times are tough and the days are growing short. It is difficult to stand in faith as the darkness fills the world. Sometimes the pain we experience is just too much for us to bear. Many may wonder if God is truly with them in all things. For instance, where is God when a loved one dies or when bad things happen to innocent people? This question and other similar ones have troubled believers everywhere.
The truth that remains is that God is with us in everything and anything that comes against us. God’s plan was for us to live in paradise with him forever, but because of man’s sin, death and destruction came into our world. But the love of God never left us.
Sin is rebellion against God and it allowed Satan and his demons to roam this earth seeking to destroy us. We were doomed. “But God so loved the world that he sent his only Son that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life”. (John 3:16)
His love for us was so great that he was willing to sacrifice the blood of his Son Jesus to bring us back to fellowship with him.
God’s love for us continues even though we are sinners who turned from the ways of God. To the ends of the earth, God has sent his word to seek out the lost and offer the free gift of salvation through the cross of Jesus. And though this world is perishing, those whose hope is in Christ will never be destroyed. Death that can take the body can never touch the soul of a believer. Jesus said in John 5:24, “Whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.” That means that no sickness,financial problems, divorce, pain or even death can end God’s promise for us of victory and eternity with him.
Life on this earth is fleeting. Eternity with God is never-ending and it is there that you will understand that the storms in your life were only the winds that brought you closer to the reward that God has prepared for you. You will know then that God never left your side despite what you had to suffer. The strength to endure and not to fear was always with you and that his power was manifested in your weakness.
There will always be death and evil on this earth until Jesus comes back. That is why as believers we must not conform to this world but be set apart. We must live different lives and not react as those who have no hope. The sickness or loss of someone close to us may tear at our heart, but our strength must come from the hope that God has given us.
Our life on this earth is not the end. Innocent people will continue to suffer at the hands of evildoers and sickness will take loved ones from this earth, but God’s justice and purpose will always prevail. We must trust that God will use for good all that comes against us.
The Apostle Paul suffered torture and pain in his life, but he knew that it was all going to be used for the glory of God. For him, to die was gain but to live was for Christ. He knew that God had an eternal purpose for everything that he had to endure.
When we don’t understand the reason God allows pain and suffering in our lives and those whom we love, we must have faith that God is always at work in us, and that those who endure to the end will receive the reward that far outweighs it all! The trials of this earth are temporary, but the reward of God is eternal. For now, I pray that you understand that God will be with you in your pain and will take you through the valley of your tears. He is always faithful!
Dear Lord, the pain and burdens of this world can bring us to our knees. Sometimes we falter in our faith as we struggle against the war that the enemy is waging against us. I pray that those who may have experienced a loss of a loved one or who is being overwhelmed by a situation that seems hopeless. Fill them with your peace and love. May they know that no problem is bigger than the God that they serve. Help them to understand that your ways are higher and better than ours. Give them the strength to persevere in the battle and to keep their eyes on you. Your perfect plan for their life will never fail! We give you praise. Amen.
(Photo by Rob Bohning)
He can give you rest and peace no matter what trial you face
The darkness of these current days can appear abysmal. There are wars, earthquakes, tsunamis and hurricanes in the news. We watch helplessly as people throughout the world and in our own country face uncertainty as they try to rebuild their disaster devastated lives. So much is happening and some may wonder if God really cares.
The answer to this lies in God’s word. In Matthew 28:20, Jesus says,” And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age”. God’s word says 1 Peter 5:7, “Cast all your cares on him because he cares for you”. There is nothing that is happening that God is not sovereign over. If he is allowing it, there is a purpose. Scripture tells us that though now you may have to suffer grief in all kinds of trials, it is so that your faith may be proved genuine. The winds that blow through your life as a believer are never meant to weaken you but rather to strengthen you in your walk with God. In the book of Genesis, Joseph was sold into slavery by his brothers and ultimately unfairly imprisoned for many years. But God was with him. Prisons then were dark, damp and filthy and the prisoners did not get much food. After all those years Joseph should have come out of prison emaciated and sickly. Instead, Joseph emerged from prison to be appointed second highest in command in Egypt. He had the energy and the sound mind to rule despite what he had endured. God was perfectly able to keep Joseph’s mind and body strong during his time of trial and to use the evil done to him for good to accomplish the saving of many lives.
God is still with us during our struggles to lift us up above our circumstances and to use them for our good. He tells us in Psalm 41:13, “For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear, I will help you”. Those who have hope in the shed blood of Jesus have nothing to fear from this world. Hebrews 7:25 tells us that Jesus is able to save completely those who come to God through him because he always lives to intercede for them. Jesus gave his life for you so that you can have life to the fullest. He cares about your hurts, your pain, your injustice, your addictions and anything that seeks to bring you down. He left us his peace so that we can have joy no matter what trial we have because we know that Christ is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine according to his power that is at work within us.
This world is not our home and Jesus has promised to go and prepare a place for us. Nothing you have done can stand in the way of Christ’s forgiveness and mercy if you call on him. For now, there will be problems and disasters on this earth, but we have the hope that God will one day wipe away every tear and bring us to eternal life with him.
All things in this earth will pass away and only the kingdom of God will endure forever. Each day of your life you have to decide if you will serve the temporary pleasures of this fallen world or store up riches in the never ending kingdom of heaven that is to come.
Those who endure until the end will receive the unspeakable reward which Christ has prepared for those who love him. We are given only a glimpse in Scripture of what it will be like to be in the presence of God in heaven forever because our finite minds could not possibly comprehend the magnificent beauty that awaits believers.
For now on this earth, we must face the battles that each day holds as we continue to trust in the unfailing strength of our God who provides all that we need. We serve a God who alone has the power to turn a curse in our life into a blessing (Deuteronomy 23:5). No stronghold has power over your life as a believer but what you give it. You only grow weary in the battle when you empower your situation instead of magnifying your God who has the power to crush all of your enemies. You can believe the lie that says your situation is hopeless, or you can walk in the truth that says by faith you can literally move mountains.
No struggle or trial is beyond the strength of the Creator who spoke all things into existence. He who breathed life into your body can assuredly breathe new life into your broken dreams and restore what the enemy took from you. Your situation can never separate you from the love of God in Christ Jesus. Have no fear when it seems like the ground all around you is crumbling. You are not standing on the sinking sand of this earth but on the promises of Christ who will hold you and keep you standing while those around you are perishing.
Every believer is given a future with promise and a plan to succeed in all that God has called you to do. You cannot be robbed of your inheritance as a child of the King of Kings. Jesus came to this earth to die for us so that we might have eternal life with him in heaven. Your weaknesses and failures cannot stop the promise of God who reconciled us to himself in Christ not counting men’s sins against them Through Christ, we have become the righteousness of God. God’s word tells us in 1 Cor. 6: 11, ”But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God”. We were made clean and right standing not by anything that we could do, but only by what Jesus did for us on the cross. He paid the price that gave us victory over death and set us free from the bondages of this world. We only need to believe that Jesus alone is the Way, the Truth and the Life.
If you are unsure of your future and want assurance of eternity with God in heaven, now is the time to call upon the name of Jesus and ask him to reveal himself to you in a personal way. He is only a prayer away and his great love for you will do the rest.
Christ is the reason we can have hope in our lives despite the storms we face. . He is the promise for all good things and the strength to endure the trials of this life.
The promises of God are real and his faithfulness will never fail us. We have nothing to fear as believers because the power of God is always with us. Yet at times those words may ring hollow when you are in a crisis situation. You may be enduring the effects of a serious illness for which there is no cure. You may be struggling with financial difficulties and don’t know where to turn. You may be suffering the pain of a broken marriage or relationship and have lost all hope for the future. Whatever the struggle, it can be hard to stand in your faith when your circumstance seems hopeless.
We read in Proverbs 24:10, “If you falter in times of trouble, how small is your strength!”. The truth is that those who believe in the finished work of Jesus Christ have limitless power to defeat anything that comes against them. In 1 John 5:4, we are told that everyone born of God overcomes the world. The forces of evil cannot conquer a child of God. The devil himself knows that he is unable to harm a hair on your head but only what God permits. And God will only allow that struggle or pain for which he has prepared in advance to bring you through to victory. Each trial we endure is permitted to help us to develop the perseverance that we need to stay strong in this life so that our faith may be proved genuine. Christ did not suffer and die to lose the battle. His death paid the price for our victory and it cannot be taken from us. It does not matter what trouble you may be experiencing, God is willing and able to bring you through it. He alone can turn a painful situation into something that will be used for good with a reward that will last forever. God’s promise in Isaiah 61:3 is to give you beauty for ashes and gladness instead of mourning.
Those who have Jesus as their Savior have a living hope. It does not matter how weary you may feel for it is Christ who will fight your battle and he knows how to rescue the godly from trials. He has made us more than conquerors which means we cannot fail despite our weaknesses. The Apostle Paul understood that all he had to suffer was permitted for a purpose. He believed that God’s grace was able to meet all of his needs despite the pain he had to endure. For that reason, Paul was able to be content in any and every situation, good or bad. He said in Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength”. That is the kind of faith that honors God and defeats the enemy.
You can have the peace that surpasses understanding if you will keep your eyes on Christ instead of your problems. There is nothing that is impossible for him. He cannot fail you because it was by his great love that he created you. He overcame death and left us a promise that he would always be with us. Jesus will make a way through the mountain of your problems because his perfect plan for your life cannot be stopped. Remember, the love of Christ will always defeat your enemies and keep you in his perfect peace.
It is my prayer that you understand that it doesn’t matter where you are or what you are going through for Jesus will be there to help you. You are never alone. That is the promise Christ gave to us at the cross when he cried, “It is finished”. All things are under his authority and approval and for that, we have nothing to fear!