Thursday, January 5, 2012

When I Find Myself In Times Of Trouble ...

Perspective is everything in life. If we lose it we lose the ability to keep everything in its proper proportion and in its proper place. Our emotions can lead us to the heights and lows of life but a well grounded proper perspective  allows us to experience straight paths. There are some days or even seasons when we feel exactly like the psalmist who wrote:

Why have you rejected us forever, O God?    Why does your anger smolder against the sheep of your pasture? (Psalm 74:1)

There are so many things that can go wrong in a day, so many disasters that can come upon us. Many will automatically turn and say "Where is your God now?" We may even find ourselves asking that question, "Where are you God?" "Why are you allowing this?" "Have I done something to offend you?"

Our perspective is all messed up. We forget where we are and what battles we face. We think we are in the Garden of Eden and are surprised when bad things happen or when we come across evil. We forget that Jesus told us that we would have trouble in this world. It is only natural because it is a troubled world, a fallen world, a world in rebellion against God. He said that we would have trouble but that we are not to let our hearts be troubled by it because he has overcome the world.

That's the point right there; when trouble comes upon us we are not to be troubled by it but instead to trust the one who is over all things. This psalmist understood as he recorded God's message to us:

When the earth and all its people quake,    it is I who hold its pillars firm. (Psalm 75:3)

There is an important point here in the perspective we are to maintain. The earth may shake but it is God who prevents it from overcoming us. He is the one who holds the pillars, who tells the earth how far it can go and no further. He was the one who drew the line for Satan not to cross in his dealings with Job. He is the one who protects us from the worse parts of the storm and tells us to stand firm. However terrible you may think your day is you can be thankful that God has placed limits on it so that you will not be overwhelmed.

God is not raising wimps but warriors. He called the cowardly Gideon a "mighty warrior" and then led him into that reality. Jesus did not die for you so that you would be defeated by the storms of your life. While our Father puts limits on those storms Jesus is providing you with the strength to stand up in it. The Father is training you for eternity and we can praise him that he loves us this much. Hear his words: "Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified or discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." An incredible command and promise.

So have a little perspective in these matters and remain strong, not blaming God but realizing he is putting limits on these things because he loves you. Be encouraged as the "earth shakes" realizing that it is God who is holding the pillars firm. May God be glorified in and through our lives.

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