Friday, January 7, 2011


by Robin

Has the economy gotten you down? Unemployed? Foreclosed? Bankrupt? Facing a possibly terminal illness? Grieving over a lost one? No money? Like many of you, our family has gone through many of these trials, as well, at one time or another. I think this is common yet there is nothing common, or familiar, about the way it feels when you're living through it.

When times like these come around, we Christians hold many Scriptures dear to our hurting hearts, like "This too shall pass" or Phil 4:13 "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." But, what we, I, have not done well is embraced my trial as being a gift from God. That seems rather unnatural in our human thinking.

However, let's take a look at Abraham and Isaac in Gen 22: 1-2. "Now it came to pass after these things that God tested Abraham, and said to him, "Abraham!" And he said, "Here I am." Then He said, "Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you."

Many times I will assume that Satan is up to no good with giving me a good spiritual attack, but the truth is that God is giving me a test, much like the ones He gave others in the Bible. Abraham passed the testing to sacrifice his only son as a living sacrifice to God even though his own thoughts were probably calculating other promises, like "a nation will be made from his seed" and so forth. How did Abraham get past that point of *knowing* God promised him a son and then still surrendering to get up that morning and accepting the command to offer his son? How did Abraham get mentally past the reaction to be on the defensive with Satan and surrender EVERYTHING, all his problems, worries and concerns, to God?

How do we find that peace? acceptance? ability to let go? that faith that expands into a mighty oak tree?

Hebrews 12 answers all those questions. Take your Bibles out and read over the passage.

First, we are surrounded by a cloud of witnesses. Our angels are here to help.
Secondly, lay aside every weight, sin that ensnares you, and run with endurance the race set before you. Pray it out to your Father in Heaven and let HIM do the battling for you.
Third, look to Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, for the joy. No matter what your circumstances are, knowing Jesus died for your sins should make you feel hopeful about your future.
God knew you'd be weary and discouraged in your trials but don't despise them. God loves you even through the trials, as He is your biggest fan, wanting you to pass those tests.

v11 in Hebrews 12 sums it all up for me on how Abraham (and I) should be able to see the trials and temptations of this life. "Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those those who have been trained by it."

God promises to yield good things after your trials, believer! Many years ago, a missionary to China faced trials while the communists took over the country. They hated that he preached about Jesus and so they threw him in jail. Even in jail, the jailors got saved. Prisioners got saved. He continued to write and translate the gospels and other Christian writings to the people by sneaking everything out of the jail. He refused to let his trials to slow him down. Finally, the authorities brought him out in the town square, in front of everyone, and chopped off both of his arms from the elbow down so he could no longer write. He lifted up his stumps and shouted to heaven, "Thank you God for the marks of the cross!!"

Dear friend, if you are a believer in Jesus Christ, please don't allow yourself to be discouraged by your trials. God corrects all his children so that we may be refined more like Him and be examples of His holiness.

Friend, if you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior of your life, please feel free to email me and ask me more about how you can have a relationship with Him. Yes, you will still have trials, but like Abraham, God will provide a way out much like He provided that ram for the sacrifice instead of killing Isaac.

God bless,

1 comment:

Deborah said...

Have a Blessed New Year!
This post encouraged me today - thank you!