Things breakdown, people get sick, others make bad decisions that impact our lives. It is the nature of living in a fallen world that these and other things happen.
What is worse is when we pray, we seek the Lord for His intervention and it seems as if either God ignored our prayers or did the exact opposite and if you were raised in a denomination that is always looking to punish people it is easy to believe that is what is happening
David 10-15 years running for his life – 1 Samuel 18 – 1 Samuel 30
Paul stoned to death – Acts 14: 19,20
Peter and John beaten and thrown into prison – Acts 5:40, and earlier
Jeremiah thrown into prison and dropped into well stuck in mud up to his neck – Jeremiah 38
Daniel in the lion’s den – Daniel 6
Shadrach, Meshach, Abednego in the furnace – Daniel 3
It could have easily seemed in all of these situations, that God had abandoned them, not heard their prayers, had been punishing them for sin but their attitudes made the difference
David learned to trust the Lord more, he battled through doubts, fears, anxiety to come to trust God’s faithfulness, trusted Him every day and watched Him deliver him from those more powerful than he.
Paul saw the Lord in heaven, was raised from the dead and learned that his life was in the Lord’s hands more than he could ever imagine and he never needed to fear death
Peter and John counted it a blessing to be persecuted for the Lord. Thanked the Lord for the opportunity and impacted the Sanhedrin and the whole community then got re-filled with the Holy Spirit given even more power/boldness to be the Lord’s witnesses in the world.
Jeremiah trusted the Lord and the Lord delivered him out of the pit and he was able to speak directly to the King. Even though everything was going bad for the nation, the Lord continue to keep Jeremiah in a bubble of protection and peace.
Daniel spent the evening with angels ministering to him and in the morning the King made a proclamation that everyone must worship the Lord
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego got see the Lord face to face in the furnace with them, got to see the Lord’s hand of protection on them and His care for them. Got promoted over the whole Kingdom and brought the King and his court to their knees.
Not one of these people complained or whined, the battled through and won. Not one of them blamed God. While each of them battled their own sins, and the sin of the people around them, they didn’t not stay in a place of guilt but chose instead to trust the Lord.
They knew the secret of trusting God despite what they were walking through.
Today’s teaching, I need you to focus on the profound attitude God is calling us all to have.
Proverbs 3:5,6 AMP
Trust in and rely confidently on the LORD with all your heart And do not rely on your own insight or understanding. In all your ways know and acknowledge and recognize Him,
And He will make your paths straight and smooth [removing obstacles that block your way].
David is being chased to be killed by the King that he had saved, protected and served. Paul is killed by the people he loves and literally laid his life down for. All Peter and John did was prayed and a man was healed. Jeremiah only spoke what God told him to speak.
In all of these things it would be easy to say
Hey God, is this what I get for serving you????
Hey God where are you, where are your promises to protect, provide for, lead and direct my path?
Proverbs, written by the second wisest man who ever lived (King Solomon)
Often when things go south in our lives, we immediately react. The things I mentioned above are most often driven by our immediate reactions. Solomon is saying do not allow your reactions to control you instead use them as a foundation to trust in the Lord. When he starts out saying to trust with all of our heart. He is saying don’t allow your reactions to go south instead put them first in God’s hands…In other words choose to say, “God I don’t know what is going on but I choose to love and trust you in all things.”
We need to choose to trust that sometimes we just can’t grasp God’s big plan as we begin to walk through some kind of struggle…he further stresses to us to not try to always figure it out intellectually or with our best wisdom and insight, we aren’t to lean (put our trust in) our own wisdom and insight but choose instead to recognize His ways.
Solomon is challenging us to know God so well that we truly believe we are the one He loves the most, that all His ways for us are going to work for our good. That he really does believe in us, has a plan for us that is for our good. To really believe that he truly knows exactly what we are going through and will work it all out if we will just choose to trust Him.
The problem is most of us somewhere along the line take our struggle and problem in our own hands, stop trusting the Lord, and try to solve or manipulate the problem ourselves….What Solomon is saying is if we can take the leap of faith to stop doing this, God will even move every obstacle out of our way….Can we get to that place?
We can if we just look at our battles and struggles differently…here is the Holy Spirit’s challenge to us through James 1:2-4 AMP
Consider it nothing but joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you fall into various trials. 3 Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]. 4 And let endurance have its perfect result and do a thorough work, so that you may be perfect and completely developed [in your faith], lacking in nothing.
Every battle, every struggle, every worry, every anxiety, all the stuff is about this…that we would be everything God has called us to be, mature in every way, living a life of peace, being champions of faith.
I know it doesn’t sound like fun but nothing worthwhile is easy. To become a great artist, musician, athlete, dancer, singer, mechanic, carpenter, anything of value takes time and practice. We have to choose to believe for better.
So it is with our walk with Christ. We use a spiritual word called, Sanctification but all it really means is becoming the overcoming, more than conquering, warrior, champion that lives in peace and joy that Christ created us to be.
Think about it….without this mentality and awareness this verse from Paul is crazy
Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!
5 Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.
6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
We change our world by the attitude we choose…how can we possibly rejoice in everything? Be anxious for nothing? Because we have chosen to look at every struggle, every battle as God being still in charge.
We can rejoice because we know the stuff is always going to happen but it does not control who you are, what I am. I am a child of God, the one that God loves the most. I don’t rejoice because of the stuff but that the stuff is only there to help me make the choice to be who he has called me to be…choosing always to know the reality that God has got me, my future in his hands and the stuff is there to teach me how to live in peace, joy, hope always….to become Christ like not worrying but believing.
Everything is for our good, our peace, our joy, our overcoming and seeing the perfect plan fulfilled….God has got this…
Today some are going through it….God has got this
Today some are really in a war….God has got this
Let Him have it