For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.
I return again to this powerful Scripture verse. This time to talk a little bit about contrary feelings or at least contrary situations. What I mean is this. There are times, I believe, we all fear the unknown. I’ve thought and written about this before. There are times when we turn our eyes more toward the fear and less toward the “Fear Redeemer”.
I’ve thought about those times when I faced a seemingly insurmountable obstacle to only find out that is exactly where God wanted me to be. The contrary situation, I wanted to be on the mountain top, yet God wanted me in the valley. Then there are those times when I wanted to be in the times of blessing and favor, yet God wanted me in the “tough times”. And when I wanted to be in the light of the day, yet God wanted me in the dark of the night.
Now you may think my thoughts are a little off the wall. Foolish may be even a word you might use. But I tell you, no. Here is why. God used all of these times when I wanted to occupy the best of the best to teach me about faith; to draw me to my knees in prayer.
I could go on and on with examples of those times when God taught me what it really meant to trust His love and care for me. I’ll share only a couple.
There was the time when I faced quintuple coronary bypass surgery. I wanted to be well and I didn’t want to hear what the doctors were telling me. I wanted to run out of the hospital and never look back. But then God showed me His plan. He gave me His strength to endure.
Then there was the time when I found out that my dad was kidnapped and was beaten. (Blog entitled “How could you love someone like me – Part 2) I desired that it was just a dream. I didn’t know what I would do. I knew that God was sending me to my dad to help in his recovery. I wanted dad to be the perfect dad I had always remembered. But the God showed me His plan. He gave me His wisdom and compassion to minister to a broken man.
Sometimes our plans lean more toward blessing and favor and mountaintops. But God shows us His plan. We may not always understand it, but I will tell you this, we will always be changed, challenged, and our faith will grow. Our hope in God rests in a total grounding of one’s confidence and expectation of God’s goodness and providential care, even in the face of trouble. Hope can always be placed in God in the face of every difficulty or trial. “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1 NKJV
Life is easy, when you’re up on that mountain. But let me tell you where the streams of living water run. They run in the bottom of the valley. Be encouraged my friend that when we don’t understand why the valleys are so deep, the tough times seem so long, and the darkness seems to overshadow us, God does. Allow God to show you His plan. Because at the end of it all, God will reveal His glory to you. “I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.”
Dear Lord, thank You that Your plan for our lives is filled with hope and a future. Thank You that You love us with an everlasting love. Teach us Lord to trust in Your ways even in the midst of adversity. Have Your way in our lives and we will sing Your praises. In Jesus Name. AMEN.
Don’t believe me, believe God!