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Surviving In Times Of Trouble

 

Surviving in Times of Trouble

Matt 4:1-2

Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil.

As a Christian, when we encounter trials, pain, loss and difficult times we just naturally pray against them as an attack from the enemy. While they certainly are a result of his work, we need to remember that often it is God who is allowing it for His purposes.

James 1:2-4

Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

We don’t enjoy pain and suffering, but we should rejoice when God allows us to endure it so that His work in us can be made complete.

1 Peter 1:6-8

In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith — of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire — may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

God uses all these trying times, which Satan tries to use to derail us, to actually refine us and make us stronger. Faith does not come in a vacuum; it grows and is made stronger only in response to trials and tribulation. It is through our trials that our character and relationship to God is revealed. It is how we respond to these times and walk out our faith that becomes the witness to others. Remember, people are watching us. How we react to our trouble that makes our lives questionable.

John 16:33

"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."  

Hard times are going to come, even for the most devout follower of Christ. What sets us apart is the knowledge that God is with us through the tough times. He never leaves us or abandons us. It may seem like He has, but He is right there with us every step of the way.

2 Corinthians 4:16-17

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.

Look, I get it, when we are in the midst of our trials, it seems as though they are never going to go away and it is extremely painful. That’s the point. Satan wants us focused on our belly buttons (I call it navel gazing). As long as he can keep us focused on our troubles he has accomplished his goal. It is only when we lift up our gaze and look at our situation through God’s eyes that we begin to see it in the framework of eternity and God’s master plan. Mountains don’t look nearly as high and intimidating when you are flying over them at 30,000 feet.

Hebrews 13:5-6

"Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you." So we say with confidence,

"The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?"   

Remember, it may be Satan that is attacking you, but you need to go to the Father in prayer and ask Him, “What are you trying to teach me? What in my life needs to change or be eliminated? How can I use this trial as a witness for you? Help me to praise you in the midst of this trial.”

 

Pastor Jay Molina