For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow
Favorite church sign of the week: Fall leaves; God never leaves
Have you ever been in a situation where you wondered if God truly was with you? During the death of a loved one/child/spouse? Loss of a job/house?
You prayed hard but your prayer was not answered the way you wanted. You began to wonder is God listening?
My mind goes back to the farm. About every farmer had a barn dog. Some were good “ratters.” They knew how to catch and kill rats.
They learned quick to grab a rat around the neck so as not to get bit by the rat.
One farmer I remember had a German dog whose specialty was hunting groundhogs. It knew how to kill them without getting hurt too bad.
That comes from experience after being in a fight or two.
God wants us to become men and women who know how to fight spiritual battles.
Seasoned fighters get that way by getting into the fight and learning from the battles. While we are in training, God is not going to step in and stop us from getting hurt.
It is through the battles we learn and grow to become seasoned men and women God can use.
James 1:2-4 (New Living Testament) reads, “Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.
For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.”
We battle our fleshly lusts which war against the soul, (1 Peter 2:11). They are the lust of the flesh (pleasure), the lust of the eyes (possessions), and the pride of life (power/position). 1 John 2:16 (New King James Version).
One of the devil’s biggest lies is to make people believe if they could only fulfill the desires of their senses, life would be good. Living to fulfill our sensual desires leads us into “many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction.” (1 Timothy 6:9 New Living Testament).
When we follow our lusts to our own hurt, God sits back and watches. He does not go with us along that path. He allows us tosuffer painful experiences to teach us a lesson to produce in us faith and obedience to his will, not ours. (Hebrews 12:10-11).
God will not leave us nor forsake us but he will not walk with us when we travel the broad way instead of the narrow way God travels on. You travel the broad way alone.
May you have a blessed week unless you have other plans.
Maranatha. (Maranatha means, “Our Lord Cometh.”)
The Rev. Elton Yutzy is the associate pastor of the Maranatha Community Fellowship Church in Plain City. He can be reached by e-mail at email@example.com.