Psalm 34:19 The righteous person may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all;
What if…? Have you ever noticed how these two words have a tendency to lead us down a trail that leads to a place we really don’t want to go to? We get there by ignoring God’s big “Do Not Enter” warnings! What if I lose my job? What if finances don’t come through? What if something bad happens? What if I make a mistake? What if I fail? What if things don’t work out?
Such thoughts when unchecked, will lead to behavior that is inconsistent with our faith. Troubles or difficulties in our lives are all opportunities to respond in faith. When we become preoccupied with ’what if’, small issues that might be real can become ‘giants in the land’ that cause us to want to back away in fear rather than walk in faith. To use The Wizard of Oz as an example, even legitimate concerns responded to wrongly can begin as a little old man behind the curtain that become like the ogre on the screen that intimidates us.
Troubles and difficulties are a fact of life. The key becomes who or what dominates our view of such things. Do we focus on the troubles? Or do we view them as reminders to look to our Lord who delivers us from them? Typically, He doesn’t simply take them away, but he enables us to be delivered from them by overcoming them. Even in those times when the troubles seem to overcome us (think about Joseph in Egypt) we have the opportunity to respond in faith and find our joy and security in Him.
God wants us to experience the joy of experiencing His presence with us, sustaining us as we contend with the troubles of life. We’re never alone. This is reality not just theology. All of the difficulties or troubles we have are opportunities to walk faithfully with Him and glorify Him in how we respond.
It might be stormy around us but He provides peaceful hearts to those who look to Him. Think of having a friend or co-worker come up and ask, “How can you be so calm with everything going on?” What an opportunity to talk about the reality of Jesus, evident in your life!