Tag Archives: Endurance

It Came to Pass!

Discouragement and intimidation hinder us from being our best selves.  To be discouraged is to “be deprived of courage or confidence; disheartened; to hinder by disfavoring.”  In other words when you are discouraged you cease to live courageously.  Secondly, intimidation.  Intimidation means “to make timid or fearful; to compel or deter by or as if by threats.”  For example, Christians who are intimidated will not pursue the call of God in their lives for fear they will not reach their goals; for fear they are cursed or living outside the grace of God.  They often fear that God is against them rather than for them.  And these twin enemies, discouragement and intimidation, paralyze the believer from standing their ground as it pertains to their faith in Jesus Christ.  Lord, have mercy!

This is serious because discouragement isolates you and intimidation keeps you from boldly proclaiming the gospel of Jesus
Christ.  To know how to navigate this life is something every Christian needs to know.  1 Peter 3:13-22 gives us a path through suffering.  He cites three things we should do to battle against discouragement and intimidation as we do the work of Christ in the world.  Those three things are (1) expect to suffer; (2) don’t be intimidated; and (3) expect the victory.

During a Sunday class the question was asked, “In your time of discouragement, what is your favorite Scripture?”

A young man said, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want” Psalm 23:1. A middle age woman said, “God is my refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble” Psalm 46:1. Another woman said, “In this world you shall have tribulations, but be of good cheer, I have overcome this world” John 16:33-35.

Then old Mr. John who was 80 years old, with head of white hair and dark black skin, stood up and said with as much strength as he could muster, “It says, ‘And it came to pass…’ 85 times in the Bible.” The class started to laugh a little, thinking that old Mr. John’s lack of memory was getting the best of him.

When the snickering stopped, he said, “At 30, I lost my job with six hungry mouths and a wife to feed. I didn’t know how I would make it. At 40, my eldest son was killed overseas in the war. It knocked me down. At 50, my house burned to the ground. Nothing was saved out of the house. At 60, my wife of 40 years got cancer. It slowly ate away at her. We cried together many a night on our knees in prayer. At 65, she died. I still miss her today.

“The agony I went through in each of these situations was unbelievable. I wondered where was God. But each time I looked in the bible I saw one of those 85 verses that said, ‘And it came to pass’ I felt that God was telling me, my pain and my circumstances were also going to pass and that God would get me through it.”

When you expect suffering; when you refuse to be intimidated; and when you expect the victory, whatever you face in life, remember “It CAME to PASS!”

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You Can Handle It!

No test or temptation that comes your way is beyond the course of what others have had to face. All you need to remember is that God will never let you down; he’ll never let you be pushed past your limit; he’ll always be there to help you come through it.”              (1 Corinthians 10:13)

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Life’s difficulties are proportionate to what we can handle.  Getting laid off from your job may seem overwhelming, but you can handle it.  Losing your baby at an early age or at birth may throw you into a fiery furnace of turmoil and pain, but you can handle it.  Being abused by your husband or disrespected by your wife resembles being tossed to and fro by angry waves and fierce winds which propel a hurricane, but you can handle it.  You may have insufficient funds to pay your bills and creditors are threatening or have already come and repossessed what they loaned you, but you can handle it.  That’s right, Life’s difficulties are proportionate to what we can handle.

In other words, whatever you’re going through, God has already worked out a plan for you to be able to handle it.  That’s why you need not turn to the left hand or to the right hand in search of resolution of your various trials and tribulations.  That’s why you need not toss in the middle of the night frustrated and wondering how you’re going to make it.  The answer to your dilemma is found within you, and all you need do is pray and fast and allow the Holy Spirit to show you the way that God has already made for you to be able to bear up under the weight of that burden until the door is opened for your exit.  Is that not why the old folks in the heat of the day exclaim, “I’m so glad that trouble don’t last always.”  Hallelujah!