Last month I published a series of three posts on the trials and tribulations of Christians (If You “Trust God Every Trial Can Be A Blessing Even Though I Doesn’t Look That Way At The Time”, “Your Trials Can Help Others”, and “Why God Allows Trial And Temptation”).
In “Trust God Every Trial Can Be A Blessing Even Though I Doesn’t Look That Way At The Time”, is the statement’ “Maybe you are facing a major difficulty right now. It may be an illness or guilt or a financial problem or strain in a relationship. Does God have a word for you while you’re going through your difficulty? Absolutely. God is saying to you, “Don’t give up. Grow up.” Fulfill the purpose of your difficulty — becoming more and more the person he created you to be.
In “Your Trials Can Help Others”; “Though the typical human response is to avoid pain at all costs, Paul calls Christians to accept their trials in light of the fact that God suffers with us and because God causes good things to come from our difficulties Suffering is part of being united with Jesus, but suffering is temporary.”
In “Why God Allows Trial And Temptation”; is this;
“Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death. Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. — James 1:12-17
Remember, sin is that which is anti-God. Therefore, God will never lead someone to sin; doing so goes against His very nature.
However, He will test believers by putting them through difficult training that will both strengthen them and reveal their current conditions (like a refiner’s fire).
Both situations involve challenge. How do we know then if it’s a temptation or a trial? We don’t — that’s God’s business. In either situation, we are to remain faithful to the Lord and believe He will reveal the reason in due time. If we are obedient in a temptation, we will resist the Devil, and he will flee from us. If we’re obedient in a trial, we will emerge stronger than ever. We must believe by faith that God has our best interests in mind and not doubt His love or provision regardless of the circumstances we are going through.”
Recently I read something written by Rick Warren. He writes about the struggles of family following the suicide of his son and the very public reaction to it. In this devotion Rick says that God used the most difficult trial that he has ever endured to set him free.
God Can Use Your Trials to Set You Free
By Rick Warren
“You let captors set foot on our neck; then we went through fire and water and you led us out to freedom” (Psalm 66:12 NAB).
You’ll face trials in life, no doubt about it.
But God will use them to free you.
In fact, sometimes what others expect will enslave you, God uses to liberate you. He’ll use them to set you free from the expectations and opinions of others.
The Bible says it like this: “You let captors set foot on our neck; then we went through fire and water and you led us out to freedom” (Psalm 66:12 NAB).
God wants you to be free. The Bible says the truth will set you free. But truth often comes with a high cost.
Four years ago my youngest son died. You might have heard the story. He had struggled with mental health his entire life. He had a troubled mind but a tender heart.
The day he took his life was the worst day of my life. I’ll never forget it.
But to make matters worse, Satan tried to take advantage of it. Critics came out in full force, saying horrible things about my family. You’d see them on TV, in magazines, and on blogs. They celebrated and laughed at his death. It was brutal, public, and constant. I thought I was going through Hell itself.
But God walked with me every step of the way. During this time, someone asked me how I was doing and I responded, “Honestly, I feel fearless.”
I wasn’t afraid. All I kept thinking was, “Satan, is that all you can throw at me? Are those critics the best you have?”
I’m not afraid of anything anymore. I’m living for an audience of one. Sometimes God uses tough times to wean you off an addiction to other people’s approval. You just don’t need it to be happy.
God Can Use Your Trials to Set You Free - Daily Hope with Rick Warren - October 20, 2017
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Donald Jacobs is an ordained minister with the spiritual gift of teaching. He is the Associate Pastor of a non-denominational church in Los Angeles, CA.