I am writing this post after a pause in posting for such song time. I am in a hospital where my daughter is receiving treatment for a year old chronic kidney condition.
Our lives have been turned upside down by this sickness. And you begin to wonder why so many avoid you, perhaps your apparent trial threatens insecure Christians who believe faith is for the successful, and if we have sickness in our midst, or poverty, or our ministry has to
take a back seat, maybe we are no longer qualifiable for support or contact.
We must consider that our faith is not for when the going is good.
When we remember Jesus getting into the boat and the storm arose on the lake, how much more does our vision of Jesus need to be clear!
The fear was in the storm, for its worst, and Jesus was somehow forgotten in the struggle against the elements. What elements are you rowing against today? Is your boat about to sink? Where us Jesus in all of this?
Jesus was asleep!
He was showing us the true meaning of rest.
God guides us THROUGH difficulties, and I can only surmise that it is happening because God is looking for a RESPONSE from us. One of trust that comes from a refined character.
I can only trust someone as I have intimacy with them, learning their ways. I can only trust someone as their character is displayed as trustworthy. Has not God proved through His Word, through specific times when miraculously He moves to correct a impossible situation.
When I think 3 weeks ago I could have died in a crash coming to Bristol. I had had the car repaired, but they forgot to put the wheel bolts in the wheel, which flew off at 70mph. God was faithful. We did not get hurt. All this when my daughter was ill.
All this to say our trials bring trust in God through our faith, and a refining of our own character.
That way we do not see situations happen TO us, but FOR us.
Joseph, revealed himself to his brothers and they recoiled in terror. They thought that Joseph would take revenge for the injustice if betrayal, and being sold as a slave. Spent his 13 years in places of hardship and injustice. But God lifted him up. He himself said, whatever was meant for evil came out in blessing.
Who knows, maybe your current trial causes you to begin to live out a different ministry far different from what we envisaged, or have a marriage different to how we expected it to be. All things work together for good…
Stop looking at the temporal and see that God is using your trials to steer your eternity into the most intimate and meaningful life!!!
James says that He who passes the trial, that is, retains his faith, even if he does not get healed, prosperous, or in ministry. God is not just interested in giving us blessings if it forfeits an eternal crown!
The Gospel is a Gospel of miracles but it is a Gospel of betrayal, pain and death. Those who were religious fled and fell, but those who had an understanding all began to see Him in His new state.
But Peter, who failed miserably, was singled out to be the greatest. But he had to descend the steps of failure, despair and “death to a dream”.
Jesus not only restored his concept of acceptance of Peter, His belief in him, and His Call to him, but He drew Him back to intimacy and showed him that it was ok to fail, but in the failure be humble enough to recognize that He alone justifies.
Our earthly success could be the stepping stone to our eternal failure!
We need to overcome our flesh, our weakness, only by recognising that only He can wipe our slate clean.
I we fail, fall sick, fall from grace, He is there to give us tools for eternal success, tools for inner healing, and steps of Grace to walk afresh in Him. All it takes is a realization that we are most frail.
As Nathan cried out: you are the man! So God confronts our lack of humility. But in our falling He takes us to see a deep facet of His dealings with us!
Today, with all sickness, breakdown in families and marriages, poverty, God wants and is revealing the depths of His Grace! This grace we flow in as we are conscious of our failings, Fallings, fadings !!!