Paul told the Corinthians in his second letter, “We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about the troubles we experienced in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.
Paul succinctly explains the “why” when it comes to the pressures we face as Christians—that we my depend upon God and not ourselves. He also offers me great consolation in knowing that I am not some sort of “pygmy” Christian because I think that I “have had enough” and want to “give up” sometimes. Paul also despaired of life! Yet, he persevered and did not cave in to self-pity——and neither should I.
Lately God has done wonderful things in my life —things that I did not see coming. He surprises me each day! Never doing things or rescuing me in the manner and I time I imagine most beneficial, He nonetheless gets it done. This is the life of faith I was called to live—the very life all who claim Christ as their Lord are called to live. It is not natural, or “safe” or stable—-it is frankly a wild ride most of the time.
But I realize that He puts challenges, obstacles, frustrations, set-backs and heartache into my life—things that He knows full-well that I can not endure. And I truly am drawn closer to Him by my desperate situations in life and because, quite honestly, I trust Him to have a better solution to my seemingly hopeless odds than I myself or others.
Even now, this very day, I have good reason to be perplexed and downcast because of some things that have just not gone the way I had hoped and prayed they would. But I have an indescribable joy of knowing that He has orchestrated this for the very purpose of pulling me closer to Him…. because He loves me—-despite how desperate and precarious my life is today!
I know that some folks seek high adventure, sensations thrills and breath-taking adventures, but honestly, nothing reveals who, what and whose I really am as when I call upon Him to, “Have Your way with me Lord—no matter what it requires and how long it takes”. THAT’S when the real adventure begins—-and then men and the boys (or the women and the girls) are separated.
Dear Lord, make me into one of those men.
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