More from EDIFIED!
“I will declare that your love stands firm forever, that you established your faithfulness in heaven itself.”
Every week someone tells me that all their problems would be solved if only they had more money, or a house, or a car, or a better job.
The pull of the human heart is ever towards comfort—we may enjoy a challenge for a while, but eventually we want to get to a position where we can kick back and relax. We want to get rid of pressures as much as possible. For many this means having a substantial nest egg so they can live any lifestyle they please. For others it may be a less stressful job.
For us believers, however, the situation should be different: our hearts and minds are to be set on things above (Col. 3:1-2). Our desire is really the opposite of the world’s desire to be independent; we want to grow in conscious and committed dependence on God.
It is in the midst of uncomfortable situations that we can mature in this, choosing to give Him glory in our weakness and in His strength. One author puts it this way, “We must get away from the idea that deliverance from trial is the highest form of spiritual blessing. We learn more in a few days in the fiery furnace than we would learn in years out of it.” (J. Oswald Sanders. Spiritual Maturity. Chicago: Moody Press, 1962, p. 64.)
Life gives us plenty of opportunities to live this way, but I, for one, often find myself shrinking back from many of them. Scripture, fortunately, reminds me of the reality I need to embrace: “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me” (Ps. 23:4).
There are dark valleys, and we will go through them, but never alone—and if we enter them with faith in God’s goodness and His plan for us, we will come out of them deepened because Jesus, our Shepherd, is there every day, every moment, every step of the way, leading us on. In the midst of difficulty He offers us grace, love and joy in our relationship with Him, something that material security can never give!
It is up to us to take up His grace and love, to live in them, meeting with Him each day, soaking in the Word, joining Him through prayer. He’s waiting there every morning to spend time with us, His beloved children. Are we as eager as He is to meet?
Prayer; “Lord, help me every day to meet with you so I can better live out the words of Psalm 89:15, ‘Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim Him, to walk in the light of His presence.’ Amen.”