A Devotion By Cheryl Zelenka
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 NKJV
“Look, all you who kindle a fire, who encircle yourselves with sparks: Walk in the light of your fire and in the sparks you have kindled— This you shall have from My hand: You shall lie down in torment.” Isaiah 50:11 (NKJV)
Have you ever had a fantastic day that was followed by real struggles, disappointment, and hardship? Do you know what it feels like to be on the teeter-totter of emotional ups and downs? One day full of joy and hope, and the next day fearful and shocked by circumstances beyond your control?
What was your response? Were you knocked to the ground? Did you throw a fit of anger? Were you so overwhelmed and hopeless that you refused to get back up, or even pray? Or, did you make lemonade out of your bitter lemons?
I have recently had this experience. One of the best days in life was followed by one of my most trying days. I know the fearful worry of loosing financial security and seeing a savings account get perilously close to empty.
At such moments we must stand upon our faith and trust in His goodness and provisions. We might not understand the circumstance, but we can comprehend the promises found in the Word of God. It never pays to doubt them. Worry has no profit. He will always direct our path, even when we don’t have a road map.
When we don’t live a day-by-day reliance on God’s provision and direction, it is easy to forget nobody knows what tomorrow holds. We expect each day to be the same. We say, “Well, today was safe and full of joy, so tomorrow simply has to be safe and joyful as well. I am a good person. I deserve a good life.” Life, just like a broken and bumpy road, will always have potholes and obstacles to overcome. It has nothing to do with being good or faithful.
If you think your life is securely set and your future is clear of trouble, watch out! Who and what are you relying on each day? Is it your job or the money tucked away in a savings account? We are warned NOT to be self-sufficient (Isaiah 50:11).
The enemy loves to pull the rug out from under our feet and watch us fall. He is after all, the hungry prowling lion that tirelessly waits for an opportunity to pounce and devour. He is skilled in weaving webs of deceit and discouragement. He watches for opportune times when we have let down our guard or become complacent. Forgetting how much we daily need God and His provisions is just asking for trouble.
Routine may lead some to boredom, but many find comfort and safety in its supposed confines of predictability. However, routine can be an enemy. It lends itself to complacency. An expectancy that, “All is well and will be so forever more” is not what the Word of God teaches us. John 16:33 states, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
The unknown and bumpy road called FUTURE is one we all have to travel. It will mold and refined us. We may look bruised and battered to the world while on this journey, but we are beautiful in the Lord’s eyes. He is transforming us into the work of outstanding artistry He always had in mind when first He created us.
Dear friend, you must remember to be on guard and watchful against the snares of the enemy. Guard against complacency and thinking life will never bring an unexpected sorrow. Don’t crumble to the ground when tragedy hits, but stand on your faith for God will see you through to higher ground.
Trust that with each pothole you happen to hit in your travels, there is smooth pavement ahead for your weary and tired “wheels.” Flat tires can be replaced and nicks in bodywork can be painted and touched up. The lessons we learn while facing obstacles far outweigh our temporary pain and suffering. For they increase our value in the sight of God. How? He sees that we are willing to share in the sufferings of Christ with a constant faith and love no matter our circumstance.
Keep a watch out for potholes in your race to the finish line, and remain strong in your faith while relying on Him to turn things around for His glory.
“Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you—guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us.” 2 Timothy 1:14 (NKJV)
“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” 1 Peter 5:8 (NKJV)
Viewpoints expressed herein are of the article’s author(s), or of the person(s) or organization(s) quoted or linked therein, and do not necessarily represent those of The Olive Branch Report
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