Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – March 5, 2016
It will be as though a man fled from a lion only to meet a bear, as though he entered his house and rested his hand on the wall only to have a snake bite him. Amos 5:19
Sometimes, things have to get worse before they get better. Your finances, relationships, job, and health may all have to get worse before they get better. This is not fun, but it is reality. The wheels of God’s will are in motion and this is part of the process, but a better day is coming. Adversity can be agonizing but it does not have to be forever. Indeed, it is hard to follow hard after God when times are hard. You want to take matters into your own hands and fix them, but you can’t do it alone. You need God and you need others. Use this time in the downward spiral to look up to your Savior, Jesus. Let go, and allow Him to love you. Search your character and see what needs to change for the better. It is during this time of crumbling circumstances that dependence on Christ needs to be front and center.
Yes, fear may be pursuing you like an uncaged lion. In your mind, there is a lion behind you and a bear in front of you. There is nowhere to turn; it seems you have used up all of your options. Your home was a sanctuary of peace, but now its serpents of insecurity attack you. People are more patient when things are going well, for they overlook indiscretions or idiosyncrasies during the good times. But now things are in the process of going from bad to worse. People’s patience is wearing thin, and they are looking for a scapegoat. So surrender to your Savior during this surreal time.
Trust God and take responsibility by not running from your role as leader. Get down on your knees in prayer, and then get up and lead on in the power of the Holy Spirit. Confess and repent of your sin, and then rise with a radical faith that will see you through. Now is the time to increase your dependence on God and decrease your need for clever tactics. Use this transition from bad to worse as a reason for self-denial. Come alive in Christ and conform to His image. Do not complicate things and miss the fact that faith in Him is your greatest asset. Reject fear, and replace it with raw reliance on the Lord. Paul experienced survival with his Savior:
“I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, I have been constantly on the move” (2 Corinthians 11:23b-26a).
People are watching for you to waver in your commitment to God’s call, so stay where He has called you, and watch Him work wonders. Faithful is He who has called you, for He will do it (I Thessalonians 5:24). Face your fears with faith, for you are kept and protected by the grace of God. The Lord is good, and while things may get worse, His will does prevail. You can look forward to the better, knowing you did not compromise your convictions. You stayed true to your calling because you knew Christ was in control. He will see you through this, so follow Jesus by faith. Through thick and thin, be true to Him. His work will not be stopped, and what He initiates, He completes. Let go of hell’s harassment, and hold on to the hope of heaven. Allow your character to become better during this bad time. Christ is your Master, not circumstances. Therefore, walk with the Lord from bad to worse to better.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I trust You even if my circumstances need to become worse before they get better.
Application: What commitment do I need to stay true to, because I know Christ will come through?
Related Readings: Ecclesiastes 7:14; Isaiah 5:4; Luke 22:42-43
Post/Tweet this today: Let go of hell’s harassment and grasp hold of heaven’s hope. #WisdomHunters #badtoworse
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