It’s been a long time since I posted anything. A lot of struggles and changes have occurred so that I am unsure where to head with this.
So, I will start with when I was in church on New Years Eve. I went expecting to hear a message encouraging me to review the past year and look into 2019. That I did hear. The message was encouraging as the pastor reminded me, as Joshua did, to commit myself to following God in the upcoming year. I was even able to receive the Lord’s Supper, a visible reminder of the love of my Savior who willingly gave his life to pay for my sins.
However, as I walked away from the service the same issue that plagued me throughout the month of December bubbled to the surface. Where was that loving hand of God in all those challenges through which I had been trudging? Why did it feel that I was just waiting for the next “bad” thing to happen?
As I write that, I am ashamed. I know and believe the message of Jesus I have told you these things, so that you may have peace in me. In this world you are going to have trouble. But be courageous! I have overcome the world. John 16:33 (EHV) Just because I know Jesus is my Savior, my struggles are no less real as I live my life. So what do I need to know to trust him?
- Trusting God is a fulltime commitment–Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind Luke 10:27. Trusting him is not like watching a 250 channel cable television. I cannot change to trust something else just because I do not like what I am seeing from God.
- Trusting God means I take myself out of the equation–Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding Proverbs 3:5. Because what God is doing does not make sense to me does not mean I stop trusting him. After all, he is God.
- No matter how I feel, I still need to trust in him—On the day when I am afraid, I will trust in you Psalm 53:6. Even when it seems not even God can or will fix what is going on, my trust cannot waver.
- Believe in the redeeming work of Jesus–Indeed, he who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also graciously give us all things along with him? Romans 8:32. If I believe the first half of this passage, I need to believe the second half.
So that is what I know is true. That is what know will keep me trusting that God is always there taking care of whatever is happening in my life. That reminds me of when I sat with my wife and Pastor Berger discussing myat that time still-active drinking. I spent considerable timee sharing everything I knew about my alcoholism and how to deal with it.
Pastor Berger has been with his Lord for almost 22 years, but his words still stick with me. They are as apropos now as they were then: “You know the answers, John. Time to stop waiting around and do something!”
I know the assurances from God’s Word. I know Jesus died for me and his promise to never let me alone.
I see the examples God placed into my life of those who trust. There’s my wife, Diane who daily submerges herself in the Bible and bathes in the assurances found there. And my father, who was ushered into heaven just over a month ago (When there’s a Hole in Your Holiday, November 29th post) His unyielding trust in his Savior was always there–quiet, steady, and evident in how he dealt with life, even to the very end.
It’s time for me to acknowledge that I can only get through this life, the good and the rough times, by trusting in Jesus. It may never be easy since I like to take things into my own hands. That way, however, has never ended well.
So much better for me to believe and live out that assurance that Jesus left for his disciples and all of his followers. In this world you are going to have trouble. But be courageous! I have overcome the world.
What a promise! What a picture of what my life could be–no, what my life is, through faith.
Thanks for stopping by. I will see to it that it is not so long until my next post. I will wait you.
This song Tis So Sweet is performed by Mark Lowry. A little about Mark, years ago he wrote a number of questions he wanted to someday ask Mary, the mother of Jesus. Someone wrote a melody for those lyrics and together the lyrics and the melody became a song sung many times in the season just past. Mary, Did You Know?