"BLESSED IS THE MAN WHO PERSEVERES UNDER TRIAL, BECAUSE WHEN HE HAS STOOD THE TEST, HE WILL RECEIVE THE CROWN OF LIFE THAT GOD HAS PROMISED TO THOSE THAT LOVE HIM." JAMES 1:12
"The best way out is always through"........ Robert Frost
This week I have written about rising early to spend intentional time with the Lord.
I have challenged about practicing what you believe.... that God is present with you all the time.
I have questioned whether you have deliberately adjusted your life to the will and work of God, experiencing the true peace that results from that.
If you are spending fulfilling time with your Savior, and you are living your faith out loud, and you are exhibiting a peace that defies the understanding of those around you, then you will be questioned. People will want to know. How can you keep smiling and praising God when you are going through hard times? Why have your circumstances not changed your outlook? Where does your joy come from when you have trials and pain and suffering?
This is what God has been shaping you for. This is your moment to share the peace of God, the source of comfort that pulls you in close, holds you tight, and shelters you from the storm.
After all that we go through in trying times, we suddenly understand what God has done. He has taught us to praise Him even in the midst of the suffering. He has taken away what was not life giving, in order to give us the blessing of seeing with His eyes. The joy of knowing that all things work together for good. The realization that anything that gives God glory is what we accept. And in the aftermath, there is peace.
This is the secret that God longs to whisper to us if we will be still, calm our hearts, cry out to Him, and L-I-S-T-E-N. He desires to increase our faith, to raise our hopes, and deepen our joys. Through it all, our Lord is carrying out His divine purposes to give us a much brighter future with Him.
God wants to use each one of us. He wants us to be accessible to Him that He might change others through us, as He is changing us for the better.
One of our pastors once said "In life, there are the Bad times, and there are the times in between the Bad times." In this life we will have trials and sorrows. But if we hold fast to what we put our hope in, and persevere in our faith, and express our joy in knowing a Savior who lived and died for us, we will survive. And what's more, we will succeed. In Christ, we will stand and live to tell of His work and His goodness in our lives.
And that is worth living for... Amen?
The song I chose for today shares the message of this truth:
If going through suffering is what it takes to make us learn to praise Him in ALL things, because it brings Him glory, then go ahead Lord, bring the rain.
We will know that you are walking with us. Whatever trial we face, we will know that if you have brought us to it, you will absolutely see us through it.
"We went through fire and through water, but You brought us out into an abundant place." Psalm 66:12
Have you been tried and tested and come through even stronger on the other side?
Are you standing in an abundant place of God's blessings of grace and a stronger faith and a peace that even you don't understand?
Share the wealth!