What if you knew…?

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I would like you to imagine for a moment. Imagine you’ve had a hard life. In fact, all of your acquaintance’s hardships look like a honeymoon compared to your life. Betrayed by your own family. Taken away from your home and everything familiar to you. Treated like a slave. Falsely accused of attempted rape. Thrown in jail for years. Forgotten by friends. I mean, how much worse can it get?

Would you give up on life? Would you despair? Would you harbour bitterness and resentment to all those who have hurt you? Probably.

But, what if all of those terrible things that happened to you, all those unthinkable circumstances, led to an opportunity to save people’s lives – and not just a few – hundreds and thousands of lives. Would it make the suffering worthwhile? If you knew in advance that all would turn out for good, would it make the hardships any easier? I wonder …

That is why I am so inspired by Joseph. That is exactly what happened to him. But, he never gave up. He never lost faith. He kept his integrity and held no grudge. And when he finally reunited with the very brothers who sold him into slavery, he did not have them executed, which by then he had enough power and authority to do. He welcomed them with open arms, forgiving, telling them not to feel bad.

“And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you. For two years now there has been famine in the land, and for the next five years there will be no plowing and reaping. But God sent me ahead of you to preserve for you a remnant on earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So then, it was not you who sent me here, but God. He made me father to Pharaoh, lord of his entire household and ruler of all Egypt.” [Genesis 45:5-8 NIV]

I think from now on, when I go through hardships, I will try to remind myself that God may have something amazing in store, some huge turn of events to bring good out of these circumstances. After all, He did promise to make all things work together for our good. How about you?

Published in: on 17th January, 2012 at 9:24 pm  Comments (2)  
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But as for me …

Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.” [Psalm 55:22 NIV]

I have been reading the Psalms a lot recently. I’ve read all about what he did and who he was through other books of the Bible, but through the Psalms we get to hear his heart. It seems to me he did it pretty tough for a king a lot of the time.

But the thing that strikes me, is that no matter how far down in the pit he was, he ended every song or prayer with hope. “I will yet praise the Lord,” or, as in this Psalm, “As for me, I trust in You.”

I think we can learn from this, because it is so easy for us to strike a difficult patch and fall into a pity party. We forget all the good things He has done in our lives and begin to complain. In fact through the Psalms, David seemed to do the same at times — begging God not to forget him, questioning why he should suffer so — but he always turned it around by the end of the Psalm.

Even when he was losing battles…

Even when he was under the weight of guilt for adultery/murder…

Even when his friends turned against him…

Even when he was the subject of mockery…

Even when the king (Saul) wanted to hunt him down and kill him…

Even when he felt like he was having no impact on the world around him…

Even when his kingdom was falling apart…

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In everything, he learned to turn it all over to God and trust in Him. He went into his private place, sang his woes out to the Lord and let the God of peace sustain him and give him hope.

What struggles do you face today? Trust them into the Lord’s hands – they’re safe hands. Allow Him to sustain you. God bless. 🙂

Published in: on 25th October, 2011 at 4:59 am  Leave a Comment  
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Good on Purpose

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” [Romans 8:28 NIV]

In all things… In every circumstance and situation, whatever is happening in your life – all things are included in this simple phrase – nothing is left out. All cannot mean anything else but ALL.

God works for the good… He isn’t just sitting up on His throne in heaven watching the world turn below His feet with a languid smile or an angry frown. He is actively working and seeking ways to bless us and help us, to see us free of the things that trouble us, to put us in the path of blessings. He is NOT devising ways to make our life more difficult, or to punish us. He is working for our good.

Of those who love Him… There is no payment plan. We don’t owe Him anything in return … except love. How hard can it be to love someone who is working hard to bless you and help you? Not hard at all. It begins with gratitude and just grows from there.

Who have been called according to His purpose… The Lord doesn’t sit up on His throne and say “Eeny meeny miney mo, to whom will my blessing go?” and haphazardly pick some random person. He has chosen us and called us for a purpose and He works for our good ON PURPOSE.

So then, no matter what kind of crappy situation you might be finding yourself in, just trust in Him, knowing He is working on your behalf to bring about good through it, and soon you’ll be looking back smiling and loving God all the more for His provision. Can I get an AMEN? 🙂

Published in: on 13th September, 2011 at 3:17 pm  Comments (4)  
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No Guarantees?

The more I think I about it, the more I realise how true this is. You can make all the right decisions in life, try to live the best you know how, and yet bad things can still happen to you. Life can still become a struggle. Why is that? Because we can’t control the actions of those around us. We live in a corrupt world. Wrong happens around us all the time. Even the natural world is damaged by the corruption of the human way.

It’s just like when you drive. You can drive within the road laws, be responsible and take all the care in the world, but it only takes one drunk driver to plow into you and derail your world. There are no guarantees when it comes to the people around us.

But, there is one thing we can be sure of. God. He is always there and always faithful to see us through those hard times. He never promised life would be perfect, but He did promise to help us, He is the One True thing we can lean on in everything, and He will never let us down. So when people or events around you threaten to derail you, remember to turn to Him to uphold you. He is guaranteed to be there. He promised He would.

Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.” [Ps 55:22 NIV]

Published in: on 18th January, 2011 at 1:28 pm  Comments (2)  
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