Nothing is wasted!

 Difficulties, Trials  Comments Off on Nothing is wasted!
Feb 182018
 

When the Mexican boll weevil devastated the southeast Alabama cotton crop-
– farmers reverted to planting peanuts and ended up producing more than any county in the nation.

Consequently the town of Rucker erected a monument bearing this inscription:
“In profound appreciation of the boll weevil and what it has done as the herald of prosperity.”

Did you know that what starts as a problem can end as a blessing?

When Jesus discovered Lazarus was sick he didn’t respond till after he’d been dead four days.

But because Jesus was waiting didn’t mean He wasn’t working.
He chose to demonstrate His resurrecting power, to prove that nothing’s too hard for God.

Joseph was falsely imprisoned for 13 years.

But God was with him and he went on to save multitudes, including his family who’d mistreated him.
Joseph’s struggles made him better, not bitter.
But it could have ended differently if he hadn’t maintained the right attitude.

God used Esther to save her people.

But first he put her in the position of living where she didn’t want to live and doing what she didn’t want to do.

Even though a widow, Ruth ended up gleaning in a field where she met and married a wealthy man named Boaz.
In addition to bearing him children, she became part of Jesus’ ancestral bloodline.

So if you’re struggling to see God’s purpose in your suffering today-
– rest assured He has one!

After feeding a multitude Jesus told His disciples:
“Gather the leftovers so nothing is wasted!”

In God’s kingdom nothing is ever lost!
When you trust Him He makes “all things work together for good” (Romans 8:28).

(PA)

Strength in the midst of struggles!

 Difficulties  Comments Off on Strength in the midst of struggles!
Feb 122018
 

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).

A speaker was talking about managing difficult situations.

He raised a glass of water and asked the audience about the weight of the contents in the glass.

The answers varied from 20 to 500 grams.

The presenter told them that the absolute weight did not matter too much.
The important thing was the length of time he could hold the glass.

If he held it for a minute, said the speaker, nothing happens.
If he held it for an entire day, he would have to call an ambulance because it would cause him a serious problem.

The glass was the same weight.
But the longer he held it the heavier it became.

Many people, with their different experiences of bitter conflicts in their lives-
– start to load themselves with grief, grudges, and hate.

As time goes by, they become unable to bear any of it.
The burden is so heavy that despair and bitterness take over their lives.

For people with this negative attitude, conflicts become huge.
In their despair, they seek a solution but suffer great anguish in the process.

They do not want to forgive and do not even want to receive the forgiveness of those they have offended.
Their negative attitude is harmful to them and affects their personal lives.

When in the course of your life you face conflicts-
– always remember to look to our God, the Creator of life and love.

It is through faith in His Son, Jesus, that all burdens are removed.
It is through Christ that forgiveness is both received and given.

Rest in Him-
– so you may be able to enjoy His peace and protection.

Our dear Lord gives us the necessary strength in the midst of our struggles!
His presence leads us on paths that make us stronger by taking away our weaknesses and grief.

In order to get out of difficulties,
– and not surrender to them-
– come to Christ.

(PA)

Suddenly they seem smaller

 Difficulties, Trials  Comments Off on Suddenly they seem smaller
Feb 042018
 

“My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness”
(2 Corinthians 12:9).

Rather than saying-
`God, here is my problem’-
– we should put the problem into perspective by saying-
-`Problem, here is my God!’

There is no problem God cannot handle in our lives.

When we make our problems the object of our lives-
– it is easy to become discouraged and forget that we have a God who will sustain us during our trials.

However, when we change our perspective and the order of the words-
– we see that God becomes the object and the focus of our lives.

It seems like such a small detail wouldn’t matter much-
– but when you visualize introducing your problems to Almighty God,
– suddenly they seem smaller,
– and you realize just how triumphant you can be with His help.

Often, it is only a matter of changing our perspective in order to overcome adversity.

No matter what troubles you are facing-
– always remember our God is big enough, strong enough, and powerful enough to take care of them.

He is the answer to all of life’s problems, and He is enough.

Your problem is His project!

He comes to us-
– in the brokenness of our health,
– in the shipwreck of our family lives,
– in the loss of all possible peace of mind,
– even in the very thick of our sins.

He saves us in our disasters!

(PA)

Every obstacle is an opportunity!

 Difficulties, Trials  Comments Off on Every obstacle is an opportunity!
Jan 072018
 

How do you know if something bad that happens to you-
– is from God,
– or from the devil?

To be honest-
– we don’t always know where some of the hard times come from that invade our lives.

I doubt if Job realized in the midst of his suffering that God and Satan were engaged in a massive spiritual battle for his soul (Job 1:6-12).

Sometimes it’s clear!
However; in my own ministry, for example, I’ve sometimes faced difficulties that could only have come from Satan, because they were clearly intended to stop the preaching of the Gospel.

I’ve faced other situations, however, that were clearly from God-
– because they led us into new and unexpected paths for the preaching of the Gospel.

Sometimes, however, the origin of a particular problem was unclear.

The real issue is this:
When hard times come into our lives, how should we react?

Should we panic,
– or get depressed,
– or spend time blaming ourselves or others?

No!

Instead-
– we should respond in faith,
– praying for God’s will to be done,
– and for Him to help us overcome all evil for Christ’s glory.

Every obstacle is an opportunity-
– for God to demonstrate His love and power.

But hard times also can strengthen us as we rely on God-
– no matter where they came from.

Ask God to make this true in your life.
“We also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope” (Romans 5:3-4).

(PA)

Simple Choice!

 Difficulties  Comments Off on Simple Choice!
Dec 072017
 

Paul wrote his letter to the Philippians-
– during a long and unjust imprisonment.

Even though Paul is in the midst of suffering-
– this short epistle is full of rejoicing.

Paul never complains or casts blame for his situation.
Because he learned to live above his circumstances.

How do most people respond to difficulty?

First-
They try blaming others for the problem in order to make themselves feel better.
But blaming only results in broken relationships.

Second-
They may complain, which brings pity from others but only enhances the problem in their own minds.

Then-
They search for a way out of the situation and, in the process, usually make things worse.

Paul knew that in order to live above his circumstances-
– rather than merely muddling through them, he needed to shift his focus.

Instead of examining his problem and complaining, he looked to God.
He praised God, proclaiming:
“I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord” (Philippians 3:8).

God wants to hear our honest concerns, anger, and confusion about our trials.
But He also wants us to trust Him.

Focusing on the Lord and praising Him doesn’t mean that we insincerely pretend to enjoy tough times.

Instead-
We can honestly acknowledge that He is in control of the situation.
And will guide our every step just as He promised (Proverbs 3:5-6).

Believers have a simple choice!

We can wallow in self-pity.
Or we can look to Jesus Christ and learn to live above our circumstances.

(PA)