In an uncertain worls where we experience trials, pain, and loss, what can we count on?
Life Is Troubled
In the most ancient book in the Bible, a man named Job learned firsthand the pain of loss. He lost His children, his possesions, and even his friends. Such a magnituted of loss would be devastating, but Jod didn't see it as surprising.
His testimony shares the stark reality of living in a fallen world. Job said, "Man who is born of woman is of few days and full of trouble" (Job 14:1). It's not necessarily true that we are being singled out or facing something out of the ordinary. Difficulty is to be expected bec. life is troubled.
We Are Not Alone
If we feel that we are isolated in our circumstances, we've lost sight of the most critical certainty of all - God is still there, even when the bottom drops out of our world.
In Hebrews 13:5-6, we read: "Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, 'I will never leave you nor forsake you.' So we may boldly say: 'The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?'"
When life becomes overwhelming, there's nothing more important than knowing that we don't face those burdens alone, God is there.
We Have Sources Beyond Ourselves
In Matt. 6:33 Jesus spoke to people who were fearful. They were also uncertain about how they would live and how their needs would be met. Jesus wanted them to look higher when He said, "Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all shall be added to you." It may be that the pressures we feel are a result of pursuing the wrong goals. A right relationship with God is significant bec. of who He is, and bec. a relationship w/ Him is the one thing in life that lasts forever. In Him, we have an eternal supply that this world cannot destroy.
Our Pain Can Grow Our Faith
We dread pain, largely bec. we see it as so negative. The fact is, however, that our struggles can provide opportunities for us to grow in ways that times of ease could never produce. The apostle Paul wrote; "We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are preplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down but not destroyed - always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body' (2Cor.4:4-10).
If you know Christ, you can be assured that you serve the God who doesn;t waste anything - including our pain.
Our Pain Can Help Others
Not only can our struggles help us to grow, they can also provide an opportunity to help others. Our experiences can give us the background to help others when the pain of life visits them. To that end, Paul wrote; "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, w/ the comfort w/ which we ourselves are comforted by God" (2Cor.1:3-4).
We are never so well equipped to help hurting people as when we ourselves have experienced pain and loss. Then we can take God's encouragement and share it w/ others.
This Is Not The End
When we face a serious life crisis it can seem like the end of the world, that life will never be good again, and that there's nothing left to live for.
Be assured, however, that it's not the end. Paul wrote: "I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory w/c shall be revealed in us" (Rom.8:18)
Whatever dark experiences we face in this life, one day they will be overwhelmed by the perfect and complete reality of eternity in the presence of the Christ who loves us and gave Himself for us.
God's Love Is Real
When we are going through seasons of trial and hurt, it's easy to question whether God loves us at all. The experience of loss, however, is not capable of disrupting His love for us. Paul said; :I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor pricipalities nor powers, nor things present not things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God w/c is in Chrsit Jesus our Lord" (Rom.8:38-39)
The trails of life are crushing and heart-breaking. They are not, however, what matters most. Nothing in all the universe can separate us from the love of God - and that does matter the most.