Thursday, 14 September 2016
Are you struggling in your life? Are you realising our world has changed? Earthquakes, droughts, fires, floods, wars, killing, famines, sink holes, explosions, violence, disease, epidemics, lying, cheating, dishonest dealings even in the highest positions of trust.
You my friend, are seeing what our world has become, as foretold by Jesus Christ. If you are seeing these things, we rejoice for you, because the light falls upon you, and you are AWAKE. You are not in darkness, you are not lulled to sleep by worldly deceptions which promise false peace and safety.
"Take heed that no one deceives you.
For many will come in My name, saying, 'I am the Christ,' and will deceive many.
And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places.
All these are the beginning of sorrows." Martthew 24:4-8
So take heart, you may feel unsettled, struggling, as if your life is empty like the desert sands. Tears may slip from your eyes, you may be without a place to call home, struggling through another day. Your life may be filled with trials. If we are willing, God can work with us, providing help to struggle through the trial. For the real struggle is the one inside ourselves.
You see, when we struggle with a trial, we learn about ourselves. How do you behave when "Bang!" you are hit with yet another trial? Sometimes our own behaviour can be shocking. "Did I really say that?" Or, "Why did I panic?" Thankfully, we have a way to get through the horror of our own behaviour: As quick as we can, we go to God.
We thank Jesus for being there, for dying for us, we ask for forgiveness and then we ask for strength and wisdom.
What qualities would help us better deal with trials? How about this wisdom from the Bible:
"Therefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God." James 1:19-20
After thinking on these things, could trials be an education in character development? Could this be what James, an inspired writer from the Bible meant when he said:
"My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. (in the margin: perseverence or endurance). James 1:2-3
At this time in the world, with the beginning of sorrows upon us, perseverence and endurance may be lifesaving qualities. Will you let God continue a good education in you?
(These are thoughts which have developed since listening to a sermon by Brother Neville of Restitution Ministries, titled "Circumstances" on 10 September 2016, the Sabbath day. Thank you Brother Neville.)