15th August 2020
'No one promises an easy life'
5 Your faith, then, does not rest on human wisdom
but on God's power.
- 1 Cor. 2:5
No one promises an easy life when we become Christians;
and often life becomes more complicated
and challenging as we saw yesterday
in the life of Maximillian Kolbe.
Paul too is an ideal example, he endured ridicule,
malicious accusations, threats, harsh beatings,
shipwrecks and imprisonment.
Yet through all his suffering
he never stopped praising God and spoke as a man with power.
5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart.
Never rely on what you think you know.
- Proverbs 3:5 (GNT)
Most of us have faced disappointments,
which have taught us that we can only depend upon ourselves.
But living the life God has called us to
means unlearning that lesson.
Instead, we're meant to rest in God's power.
We may know in our minds that He possesses all wisdom;
as Paul wrote in his letter
to the Romans;11:33
33 How great are God's riches!
How deep are his wisdom
Who can explain his decisions?
Who can understand his ways?
but sometimes trusting Him completely
like that can be tough,
especially when our energy levels are depleted
and we feel weighed down by life's difficulties.
There have been times in my life
when I've been given to wallowing in self-pity.
I was brought down by a cloud
of disappointment and hopelessness,
especially during times of physical exhaustion.
But God is always merciful, he says,
28 'Come to me, all you who
are weary and burdened,
and I will give you rest.'
- Matthew 11:28
And again, he pulled me
into the light of his healing
power, giving me strength
to move forward
the task at hand.
Our faith is like that; at times we are on fire,
and our hope is sure,
at other times we wonder if God is in control,
where he is in all the mess around us.
We may not display the courage that Paul had,
but he would be the first to tells us
that all glory belongs to Jesus,
even in the pain and suffering.
Our faith does not rest on human wisdom but instead,
hope rests in the power of Jesus,
his death and resurrection.
Paul may have experienced times of exhaustion,
but his spiritual strength was renewed each day.
The Bible does not tell us what happened to Paul,
nor can information be found
in any other writings of the day,
but most likely he had a painful death
due to his preaching.
We don't know where or how far our problems will take us,
God never promised us a fairy tale ending
to our earthly challenges,
but God will always be walking with us,
he will never leave us,
and will strengthen our faith -
and heaven is our promised reward.
We can rest in his power instead of our lack of wisdom,
so, each day we can consciously lay aside
our own plans and expectations - and surrender to him
in the knowledge that he will never let us down.