Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Revive Thy Work O Lord"1 (Lyrics)
"Life is difficult." A simple but profound statement from M. Scott Peck's national best-seller, The Road Less Traveled. He continues, "Once we know that life is difficult — once we truly understand and accept it — then life is no longer difficult."
Recently, I heard a similar statement: "You don't get to the top of the mountain by climbing the smooth side." I concur. One of my favourite mountains to climb is Tray Mountain, located in the northeastern mountains of Georgia. But getting there requires scaling Rocky Mountain.
The biblical epitome of hardship was Job, a man from whom all was taken by Satan with God's permission. And for what purpose? To prove to Satan that Job's righteousness wasn't because God had treated him favourably. In spite of hardships, Job praised God.
Job 1:21 – I came naked from my mother's womb, and I will be naked when I leave. The Lord gave me what I had, and the Lord has taken it away. Praise the name of the Lord! (NLT)
Lies that Satan would have us believe include: life should be fair, life should be easy, and life should afford me anything I desire. Nowhere does God promise any of these things. Society may infer them, and teachers and parents may even perpetuate them, but the truth comes barrelling through when hardships strike.
God, however, doesn't want the hardship to make me bitter or angry. He desires that I experience healing. This comes by believing the truth. The truth is that I must learn to be content with what He provides, even if that's only my needs. Initiative is good, but I must learn to trust His wisdom when life's hardships arrive. Truth sets me free and helps me to face life with confidence and peace. And the truth is that God loves me, will provide for me, and will guide me through any hardship that comes my way.
Have life's hardships made you bitter, angry, or caused you to distrust God? If so, confess that to Him and let Him heal your emotions and give you a new vision for life.
Prayer: Thank You, merciful God, for promising to bring us through every hardship we face in life. Amen.