Tag Archives: Prepared

Difficult Situation

In Matthew 11:28-30 Jesus said: “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

I found this today while reading a devotional from Kay Arthur with Precepts For Life and thought it was worth posting today.

Stress is everywhere! And it shows. It shows in our bodies, in our relationships, including our relationship with God.

Time is a commodity you wish you could buy, and if you could, you would use it simply to buy peace, quiet, leisure — to do some things you long to do and not have to do them in such a rush. Just having time to think and to have the right atmosphere for thinking would be nice, wouldn’t it?

There will always be tension to life. But it needs to be a healthy, creative tension, not life-sapping stress. Marriages, families, and personal lives are falling apart as stressed-out people run away, withdraw, explode, crash, burn out and eventually find themselves so very much alone.

I believe a major cause for our stress is that we react rather than act. We’re all moving so quickly that we don’t stop and consider our future. What will it demand of us? What will it cost? Are we willing to pay the price?

We simply move. We react to the immediate.

stressIs that you today? I know it’s an area where I really do battle. I want to do everything. I have so many ideas and I love the excitement and challenge of a new venture, the potential, the “project.” So I react in the moment. I say yes when I should say no, forgetting that my time is already allotted to other things. We react in a response of the flesh instead of acting under the Holy Spirit’s control.

You see, God knows what each one of us is dealing with. He knows our pressures. He knows our conflicts. And He has made provision for each and every one of them. And that provision is Himself in the person of the Holy Spirit, indwelling us and empowering us to respond rightly.

This liberating response is wrapped up in a single word, and if you grasp the meaning of it and put it into action in your life through the Lord’s grace and power, you’ll know how to walk with the Spirit in complete control, and not one single stressful situation or circumstance in your life will be beyond your ability to handle.

The word is meekness! Meekness is the key to acting rather than reacting when disappointments come. Meekness carries the idea of humility and submission and of bringing yourself low. God is at work to build meekness into our innermost beings. And the way He works meekness in our hearts is through disappointments and trials.

Meekness is born in stress, in trials, in affliction in conflict, in difficulties. Meekness is born in situations that humble you. This meekness that God so highly values in your life will show itself, prove itself, in oppression and pressure and disappointment. It was true for God’s people Israel, and it’s true for you and me.

Let me ask you, when do you run to God the most? When do you pray the most? Isn’t it when you’re hurting the most? When you’re disappointed, stressed, pressured, you fall back in dependence upon the Lord instead of upon yourself.

Are you going through a difficult situation, a trial? Does this stressful time seem more than you can bear? Whatever the situation, whatever the stress, it is designed to make you, not to destroy you. It has been permitted by God to mold you into the image of His Son rather than disfigure you for life. God doesn’t test us to see if we’ll fail, but to show us how strong we are. He wants us to score a hundred on the exam!

No matter what happens to us, God has totally and completely and absolutely equipped and prepared us for it.

So we’re not to fight these afflictions we encounter, the trials and disappointments, these oppressions, these humbling situations. God is in perfect control of them, and in His perfect design He’s permitted them to teach us to act rather than react. We’re in training.

Easter Musings

“Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.” John 11:25

4525749Below is Some Easter Musings from Military Outreach Greater Chicago

Easter is a wonderful time for Christians as we reflect on the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.  It’s the miracle of all miracles and the basis of our Christian faith!  When thinking about Easter, we also think about Jesus’ final hours and words to those of us here on Earth.  Looking at Jesus’ words to his disciples before His ascension and the rest of Scripture, one can see similarities regarding how Christians are called to live here on earth and what our soldiers around the world are called to do on a daily basis to protect our country.  It is interesting to see the overlap and perhaps, no one is better prepared to understand what it means to be a Christian than one of our military men or women.

  1. Longing for Home – Christians recognize that this world is not our home.  We will never feel at home here on this earth and experience a sense of longing for the day when we will join our Savior in heaven.  Our men and women serving in the Armed Forces experience a sense of homesickness every day they are away from family, friends, and the familiar surroundings they leave behind to serve our nation.  They are foreigners in a land that is not their own and one they are unfamiliar with.  They long for home.
  2. Ambassadors to Those Around Them – Our military men and women often serve as the first faces many non-Americans see and as such often are the first impression that a foreigner has of who an American is.  Likewise, Christians are called to be ambassadors of Christ, serving as a sort of first example to the people around them of who Christ is and what it means and looks like to be a Christian.
  3. Facing Difficulties and Trials – Jesus never promised us that the Christian life was going to be a picnic. It was going to be tough and filled with suffering.  Our troops go through unimaginable suffering from both visible and invisible wounds they might carry for the rest of their lives.  Both overseas and at home, our troops face unique challenges that require physical and mental fortitude.
  4. Fighting An Unseen Enemy – The Bible tells us that our struggle as Christians is not against other humans, but against spiritual forces and Satan.  Similarly, our military members are often fighting unseen enemies.  Sometimes these are people who seem friendly but are really suicide bombers.  At other times, it is the emotional and physical forces that our military personnel must wrestle with.  Our military personnel must always be ready for the unpredictable.
  5. Prepared to Fight – The Bible calls us to put on the full armor of God which will protect us against the enemy.  We are to be prepared for battle and ready to give an answer to anyone who has questions about our faith.  Likewise, our soldiers have to be constantly vigilant and prepared for battle.  They need to be properly armed and equipped to face those that seek to destroy them.

As we reflect on Easter and all that Christ accomplished for us, we should be mindful of our military members who face similar and far harder situations on a day to day basis than most of us deal with here in the United States.  Have a wonderful Easter and remember, Christ has Risen!!