October 17, 2015
We do not know what to do, but we are looking to you for help.” (2Chronicles 20:12 NLT)
Have you ever faced problems that confronted you with the intolerable, the undeniable, the unthinkable and the impossible? Throughout Hebrew and church history the people of God have often been confronted with these overwhelming realities. Scripture supports the thought that God sometimes not only permits but creates these circumstances (Isaiah 45: 7). According to Isaiah He does this because He wants us to learn that He is our only hope and our only help as we live for Him in this world.
The Word of God teaches that God is our Mentor and He does His most effective mentoring when we are coping with calamities and trials of every possible description. The confession quoted above is proclaiming that the people of God have two problems. They do not know what to do and they do not have the power to do it when they know it.
Scripture tells us God will give us all the wisdom we need when we confess that we do not know what to do (James 1:5). And Scripture teaches that God will give us the power to do what He wants us to do because He is God and He always completes what He begins in us (Philippians 1:6; 2:13).
There are times when it is wrong for us to put God to the test. Then there are times when God invites us to prove Him. God wants to give us the gift of faith. He also wants to give us immeasurable degrees of the grace to overcome the greatest possible obstacles. That’s why He sometimes permits calamities or trials that force us to access His all sufficient grace.
Dick Woodward, 18 September 2013
2 Comments | Uncategorized | Tagged: faith, faith in suffering, Following Jesus Christ, God's grace, Grace, Isaiah 45:7, Spiritual Discernment, trials of faith, Trusting God | Permalink
Posted by Dick Woodward
January 19, 2013
“I form the light and create darkness, I make peace and create calamity; I, the Lord, do all these things.” (Isaiah 45:7)
When we have economic downturns and other challenges if we are spiritually oriented people we cannot help but ask ourselves the question: “Where is God in all this?” Most people have no doubts about God being the Source of prosperity and good times. But when hard times happen few of us consider the hard reality that God could be the Source of our challenging circumstances.
God tells us through the Prophet Isaiah that He is the Source of our calamities — sometimes. A man who was considered in his day to be the wisest man who ever lived wrote: “When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider: God has made the one as well as the other.” (Ecclesiastes 7:14)
There are many Scriptures that tell us God does His most effective mentoring when we are challenged by hard times. My favorite is in Chapter Fifteen of the Gospel of John where Jesus tells us He is a Vine and we are His branches. When we are fruitful branches because we are aligned with Him, His Father, Who is the divine Vine Dresser, cuts us back, or prunes us, that we might bring forth better quality and quantity of fruit.
Therefore, what often seems like a setback is the cutback of a loving heavenly Father who is pruning us so we will be more fruitful. Jesus told the apostles in the Upper Room that He wanted them to be more fruitful so their joy would be full (John 15:11). More fruit, ultimately more joy. That can be why God is the Source of our calamities—sometimes.
Leave a Comment » | Uncategorized | Tagged: cutbacks not setbacks, faith, faithful fruit, Isaiah 45:7, Jesus Christ, loving heavenly father, prophet isaiah, spirituality, theology, Trusting God, Where is God? the Vine & the Branches | Permalink
Posted by Dick Woodward