My missionary niece was working on an upcoming lesson on dealing with adversity in missions and wrote me concerning this. I’ve served God for almost thirty-five years now and encountered lots of experiences, negative and positive, along the journey. So, here are a few random thoughts on adversity.
Through the flood
Through the fire
Through the good times
Through the bad times
Bottom line: the Lord has been with us and He has always seen us through.
The exciting part of adversity is God always sees us through it, strengthens us by it, and causes us to grow in it. Sometimes the key phrase is “this too shall pass.”
The Scriptures says, “Tribulation worketh patience.” We say, “No thanks.” God says, “The medicine isn’t going to taste good but it is going to make you better.”
At times we can laugh in the face of adversity and illness BUT it is usually after the fact; on the other side of it.
God promises to bring us through and be with us on the journey. “Praise be to the LORD…who has not abandoned his kindness and faithfulness…As for me, the LORD has led me on the journey…” (Genesis 24:27).
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We have an amazingly anointed youth pastor at our local church. Aaron Batchelor is able to minister in any setting, any age, and any group of people. I love him and his little family. If you ever have the opportunity to hear him in person, grab it wholeheartedly and determinedly.
In this short blog I share some of the thoughts he so illustriously preached in a message recently. It wasn’t just a sermon but a direct message to every listener.
Not even preachers can coast their way into heaven. “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway” (1 Corinthians 9:27). Therefore, I will separate myself to a holy lifestyle. Yes, obviously it means that there are some things we have to separate ourselves from as we have live this life of faith.
I don’t want to be like one of those in the multitudes, willing to follow Him for a feast but not a fast. I don’t want to be one willing to hear another sermon but not willing to make a sacrifice.
Nor, am I seeking for a miracle and willing to fulfill a mission.
My faith should have substance and evidence. “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1). There should be living proof to my living faith.
I will not fall prey to two myths about my faith.
Myth #1: I am a spectator in God’s divine circus.
Truth: He was training us to do what He did making us fishers of men.
Myth #2: I need more faith.
Truth: I need to activate the faith I have. The faith the size of a mustard seed has mountain moving potential.
I not only need more faith, but more faithfulness. Faith can begin in petition but grows in obedience. Lord, help me live by faith and live out my faith!