Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Adversity With God

Do you find yourself surrounded by adversity? Do you see trouble on every side and do not know where to turn? What America needs more than a new president or a new political party in power is for God’s people to have a steadfast determination for the things of God. Jesus never chose His circumstances but was meek towards His Father’s dispensations for Him. God will not make you or I think like Jesus, we have to do that for ourselves. We must be determined to abide wherever we are placed. We must be determined to abide regardless of where we find ourselves in life. What keeps us from abiding? Is it our busy schedule? It’s time to GET A MOVE ON and re-prioritize our lives.  

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.” John 15:1-8 (KJV) 

Jesus understands where you are and has allowed it for His own purposes.

God’s purpose in your circumstance is often beyond our human understanding. Often we don’t understand fully what He was trying to do until we are with Him in glory. Sometimes God decides to let us in on why things are happening to encourage us to keep the course. Our Heavenly Father is concerned with what we are feeling and going through. His purposes for what we go through are always to grow us and mature us.

“O lord, thou hast searched me, and known me. Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off. Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways.”Psalm 139:1-3 KJV)

What does God want me to do when the world is falling apart around me? What does God expect from me during adversity? What does God desire from me during my time of testing? The answer is simple, perhaps so simple because our human nature wants to over complicate it. What is the answer? Simply STAND AND KNOW HE IS GOD. When the storms of life are raging, JUST STAND. When you think all is lost, JUST STAND. When you don’t know what else to do, JUST STAND.

Ultimate victory is ours through Jesus Christ. The crown of life places us into the kingdom of God and that is something that can never be taken away. We are the only ones on this side of the grave that can take our crown away. Life is not always fair, and our victories are not always obvious, but our victory through Jesus Christ should be evident. Humility should lead to acts of service. Life is most certainly not full of victories, but is certainly full of grace. 

Jesus loves and accepts us as we are, but doesn’t want us to stay that way.

As a father myself, I love and accept my children unconditionally. However, I love them too much to allow them to stay children their entire lives. There is a time and place to be a child, but we should always be growing up towards full maturity.

Sometimes my children do wrong and I have to punish them. Am I punishing them because I don’t love them? NO! In fact, it’s the exact opposite. I would not be a loving father if I allowed my children to touch a hot stove or run out into the street after a ball without punishment. How is it that we expect God in Heaven to not set boundaries for us and enforce them? We live in a world with a perverted concept of what love is. We want all the benefits of love without any of the boundaries that comes with it. The kind of love that this world wants from God is a the kind of love that pats us on the head and says “it’s okay, you don’t know any better”. That is not what love is. That is not who God is. God sets boundaries in our lives for our protection and well being just like I do with my children. If we think otherwise, perhaps we need to re think how we define love and what a father is. We serve a forgiving and compassionate God who is at the same time wants justice and hates our sin.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”John 3:16 (KJV)

Storms of this life are rarely seem as they approaching. In fact, they all seem to come surprisingly sudden. The severity may vary depending on what are facing, but they are all subject to our Savior. We may feel as if God has fallen asleep to us when the storms of life hit us, but He is not.

I have never stood a test of life alone. God never promised that the cross that He commanded us to pick up and carry would never get heavy at times. (Jesus even struggled to carry His cross) I may not know the answer to many of life’s problems, but I do know that He will never leave you. All He wants us to do is hold on until He shows up. You have to choose to not lose hope and to not give up.

There is no problem in this life that He can’t bring you though.

There is no situation beyond the reach of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

There is no cross that He asked us to carry that He won’t help us with.

When you find yourself eaten up by life’s problems, look up.

Jesus accompany’s us personally wherever we go, but still wants to be invited.

Have you ever wanted to go somewhere with someone you love and knew that you could come, but still wanted to be invited? God is the same way! When we pray to God, we are not praying to inform Him of our problems, but that to merely invite Him into our situation. God desires that personal relationship with us that only comes through communication and time spent together.

We are our company and will become more like who we spend the most time with. The question is do we want to be just like the world or more like Jesus? It is possible to be in this world, but not of this world. That can only happen when we spend time consistently in our Bible and in prayer.

That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;” – Phil 2:15 (KJV)

by John P. Toomey

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