Jesus did not promise His children that they were prosper in a worldly sense, quite the opposite. He warned that there would be trouble in this world. He warned that His children would be persecuted to the point of death, and that trouble would abound for those who proclaim the name of Jesus. But, keep in mind also that He promised to be with us through it all, to never leave or foresake us. He told us that He has overcome the world, and in that, there is comfort.
Here is a devotional that I meditate on when those refining days come, and my dear Christian friend, they will come. There is where I turn to claim the promises made by my Savior, Jesus Christ 🙂
“Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 4:4-7)
The Christian life ought to be, because Christ has amply provided the means by which it may be made, a life of alacrity and joy. It is not more the privilege of the Christian, than it is a duty which he owes to his High Priest, to ” rejoice always. ” ” Woman, why weepest thou,” were the first words of the risen Savior to Mary, and they seem to be generally applicable to the life of the Christian. He can look upon that rich field of privilege and of promise placed before him in the Bible, and can say that it is all his own.
- And where is the want that the blessed fruits of that field cannot supply, the distress which they cannot relieve, the wound that they cannot heal, the fear that they cannot quell, or the sorrow for which they do not furnish abundant consolation ?
- Where then is the cause for depression? Friend of Jesus, why weepest thou? If you have ” an Advocate with the Father,” through whom your sins are all forgiven, and you are made a child of God; and the Holy Ghost is given you as your sanctifier and comforter; and you are assured of having Almighty power for your support, and unerring wisdom for your guide, and heaven for your eternal home, what can overbalance or suppress the joy which naturally results from such privileges as these?
- Trials we may, we must meet with ; but can these depress us, when we know that “our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding, even an eternal weight of glory? “
- If tried by bodily pain, we just feel more keenly the happiness of the hope which anticipates the time when we shall have “a building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.”
- Worldly losses will not overwhelm us, if we know that we are undoubted heirs of an “inheritance that is incorruptible, undefiled, and that fadeth not awav.”
- Friends may change ; but we will be comforted by the assurance that in Christ we have a ” brother born for adversity,” nay ” a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” There rolls between us and our Father’s house, the deep and restless tide of this world’s corruption, through which we must of necessity pass, and the deeper and still more dangerous tide of the corruptions of our hearts, and we are surrounded by enemies on every side ; and when we feel our own weakness, we may be ready to fear lest we should one day fall by the hand of some of them.
- But every distressing fear is removed when we recollect that we “shall not be tempted beyond what we are able to bear,” and that, in point of fact, there is no limit to our power, for we “can do all things, through Christ strengthening us,” and that the life that is in us is the life of Christ, a life which no power can extinguish in any one of Christ’s members, any more than it can extinguish it in our glorious Head”
These devotional thoughts were written by Pastor Andy Webb of Providence PCA, Fayetteville, NC.