My wife Debbie wrote this article as a devotional for some teen girls she mentors. It spoke to me so I thought I would pass it on to the Randumblog community.
This is a BIG issue for me and something I struggle with on a daily basis!!!!!.... I know that everyone deals with this no matter what age and season of life you are in!
Being a Christian does not mean that our lives will be easy or that everything will just be handed to us on a silver platter. The Bible tells us in John 16:33 "that in this world we will have trials". Most of us have positive expectations for the future. But what if life is not as we had hoped it would be? How do we manage the unexpected, and the not-so-desirable turn of events? The answer is simple, but not easy....God has NOT given us a way out, but a way through! He has not only told us, but has shown us how we can have victory through the trials and temptations of this life.
John 16:33 "I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”
In this verse Jesus is talking to his disciples and basically telling them that their life is NOT going to be easy. In fact most of them would end up being brutally killed for their faith. WE will also have troubles, frustrations, and sorrow. It is a natural part of this life. However, Jesus goes on to say, don't be upset about this, for I have overcome the world. Jesus was telling them this before his death. He didn't say I WILL overcome the world, but I HAVE already overcome it. I believe this means that in this life will go through things that are not pleasant, but Jesus did too. However, he overcame it by his response to it. He did not sin. I believe he is letting us know that when we go through these tough times, e understands, because he has been through it, but we can also choose not to do wrong. We can choose to have the right attitude, not blame others, not give up by giving into the lies of this world.
"God does not give us overcoming life: He gives us life as we overcome. The strain is the strength. If there is no strain, there is no strength. Are you asking God to give you life and liberty and joy? He cannot, unless you will accept the strain. Immediately you face the strain, you will get the strength. If you spend yourself out physically, you become exhausted; but spend yourself spiritually, and you get more strength. God never gives strength for tomorrow, or for the next hour, but only for the strain of the minute." Oswalt Chambers
I know for my own life, frustration is a daily thing. In this world, bad things will happen, they may be small or even great. Things that we think that we cannot overcome, but God will give us the strength. He does not take it away or give us an escape. But he has provided a way through it.
We can have victory through tough times, but we must be reading the Bible, worshiping and praying, staying connected with others that share our faith, and staying free from sin through the power of God's forgiveness.
God said, "I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace," He tells us that we can rest in the fact that all we endure is working out for good whether we can see it or not! I know that I have used this example before but it always helps me to see this more practically. Have you ever seen a cross stitch? The little brown wooden circle with fabric stretched through it. There are lots of threads of many different colors used to make a picture on the fabric. Well underneath there are all these strings hanging down, a knotted mess. This is what we see in our lives. Like we are underneath this thing and we have no idea how something so messed up is going to look. However, God is looking down at the top, he sees how each thread, each color is making a beautiful picture! this is our life...we are messed up, we have all these trials and things that come through everyday life, but we cannot see the big picture. God is using these threads to make us into something more beautiful!
Here are some other verses that I thought might would help you press on through daily trouble we may face. I encourage you to read them and study them more on your own. If you have any questions or comments feel free to share.
“But he knows where I am going. And when he tests me, I will come out as pure as gold.
"Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him."
1 Peter 1:7
"so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Tweet