Sometimes even when we are living our lives, sincerely serving the Lord in everything we do, we get such opposition from the world and Satan. Troubles seem to come from all directions.
We have many good days and we also have the ‘rainy and stormy’ days.
Although written many years ago the following quote could easily apply to today!
From A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens, (English novelist (1812 – 1870)
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way – in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.
Matthew Chapter 7 verses 24-29 Jesus is teaching His disciples
24Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
25And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
26And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
27And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.
28And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine:
29For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.
(Some of the following are notes from an article I found on the Web.)
In the midst of the storm, it is often hard to see clearly. As water pounds from the Heavens, it beats off the debris from the tallest tree and clears the dirt from the ground and sidewalks below. While the rain keeps coming, it is hard to see the benefit but when the sky clears and the sun comes out it is evident that things are different. Your flesh is obviously a big part of your life and sometimes wicked ways, thoughts or actions go by undetected flying under the radar of life as we try to remain rooted and grounded in the Love of God. But when the Holy Spirit hits a rock or barrier, He will call for the rain to melt away the imperfections in our foundation. He is preparing you for the day your faith will carry you from death to life. There is no room for insufficiencies in one’s faith at this time so the Lord takes care of it in our natural life. When facing a barrage of problems and opposition in life while crying out to God, we often cannot see the benefit in the midst of a trial but that does not mean that God is not recreating His Precious Child and enacting His Perfect Plan.
Ephesians Chapter 6 verses 10-18 The Armour of God
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.
11 Put on the full armour of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.
12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
13 Therefore put on the full armour of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.
14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place,
15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.
16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.
17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.
A friend of mine once said to me “There is wonderful protection in all this armour for most parts of the body, but what do you do if someone ‘stabs you in the back’?” It was only a joke but the answer is we do not have to run away from our enemies. We can face them and God will protect us supernaturally and naturally by circumstances.
Your only requirement in this spiritual battle for your soul is to stay! Stand against the devil and He will flee! There is no need to fight, for Jesus has overcome the world including every single problem that you will ever face. Plant your feet in the Truth. Grab the Shield of Faith and stand tall. The Breastplate of Righteousness will be intact if you do waver from God’s Truth. The Helmet of Salvation will guard your mind with peace no matter what others say or do. You are rooted and grounded by faith so bring on that storm, God wants to bless you and He begins by clearing away anything and everything that may have come between you!
HOPE AND FAITH (with pictures)
Once during a drought, all the villagers decided to pray for rain. On the day of prayer all the people gathered,
but only one young boy came with an umbrella. That’s faith!
When you throw a baby in the air, she laughs because she knows you will catch her. That’s trust!
Every night we go to bed, without any assurance of being alive the next morning, but still we set the alarm clock to wake us up. That’s hope!
We plan big things for tomorrow in spite of zero knowledge of the future or having any certainty of uncertainties. That’s confidence!
If you cannot sleep, tell Jesus about your problems. He is going to be up all night anyway!
Psalm 121 verses 2 & 3
2 My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
3 He will not let you be defeated. He who guards you never sleeps.
Psalm 65:9-13 New International Version (NIV)
9 You care for the land and water it; you enrich it abundantly. The streams of God are filled with water to provide the people with grain, for so you have ordained it. 10 You drench its furrows and level its ridges; you soften it with showers and bless its crops. 11 You crown the year with your bounty, and your carts overflow with abundance. 12 The grasslands of the wilderness overflow; the hills are clothed with gladness. 13 The meadows are covered with flocks and the valleys are mantled with grain; they shout for joy and sing.
God is watering your soul today. The trial you are facing is Living Water in disguise. He has decided that you are worthwhile rich and fertile ground for His Seeds of Hope so God is “melting the clods and levelling the ridges” in your life so that the rain will make it to your heart! Abundant crops come after the earth is softened by the rain and you will live in abundance when you choose to stand in the midst of a storm. Living Water is flooding your heart and life preparing you for a “bountiful harvest” even though it seems everything is just being washed away. Don’t abandon the process but be willing to receive the priceless overflow from Heaven that God is sending in abundance to water your soul! In John 4:10, Jesus spoke of “living water”. He said, “If you only knew the gift God has for you…” God has many promises waiting for the faithful and righteous ones who remain in His Presence no matter what life hurls at them. Do you know the gift God has for you? Salvation is only the tip of the iceberg of blessing God has reserved for you. If you knew all the gifts God has waiting for you, I think instead of saying, “Why me?” many people would be crying out, “Send the rain!” God is hoping you will decide to become rooted and grounded in His Amazing Love so He can send the rain of Living Water He has reserved to cover your life, clear away all barriers between the two of you and pour His Spirit fresh and new throughout your entire life, watering you from the inside out! Stay awhile and ask the Lord to send the rain even if it comes in a storm – you are ready! God made sure of it! It’s time to stay!
Ephesians Chapter 3 verses 16-21 New International Version (NIV)
16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being,
17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love,
18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,
19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us,
21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
To stay in the Love of God and remain in His Presence throughout life’s storms will make you a mighty oak of righteousness with deep roots forever nurtured by Living Water. Jesus Christ wants to make His Home in your heart. His Word planted there will grow into a wonderfully sound relationship with roots that are established in a firm foundation of faith. It will give you the power to understand the capacity of God’s Love and recognize it in every situation and circumstance in life. It truly is the only way to EXPERIENCE the Love of God. God’s Love will complete you, giving you a full life from creation to Eternity rather than birth to death. It all begins by planting yourself and remaining there no matter what, constantly working on the foundation of faith that began when you said, “Yes” to Jesus Christ! You will be ready for the wind. You will not be afraid. You will listen for thunder. You will stand strong in the storm. Soon you will say, “Lord send the rain and I will stay!”
ISAIAH Chapter 40 verses 28-31
28 Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. 29 He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength. 30 Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; 31 but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
Once a King called upon all of his wise men and asked them “Is there a mantra or suggestion which works in every situation, in every circumstance, in every place and in every time, something which can help me when none of you is available to advise me. Tell me is there any mantra?” All the wise men got puzzled by the King’s question. How could they find one answer for all questions and something that works everywhere, in every situation? What would be something suitable in every joy, every sorrow, every defeat and every victory?
They thought and thought. After a lengthy discussion, an old man suggested something which appealed to all of them. They went to the king and gave him something written on paper. But the condition was that king was not to see it out of curiosity. Only in extreme danger, when the King finds himself alone and there seems to be no way, only then he’ll have to see it. The King put the papers under his Diamond ring. After a few days, the neighbours attacked the Kingdom. It was a collective surprise attack of the King’s enemies. The King and his army fought bravely but lost the battle. The King had to flee on his horse. The enemies were following him. His horse took him far away in the jungle. He could hear many troops of horses following him and the noise was coming closer and closer. Suddenly the King found himself standing at the end of the road – that road was not going anywhere. Underneath there was a rocky valley thousand feet deep. If he jumped into it, he would be finished and he could not return because it was a small road. The sound of enemy’s horses was approaching fast. The King became restless. There seemed to be no way. Then suddenly he saw the Diamond in his ring shining in the sun, and he remembered the message hidden in the ring. He opened the diamond and read the message. The message was very small but very great. The message was – “This too will pass.” The King read it. Again read it. Suddenly something struck him- Yes! It too will pass. Only a few days ago, I was enjoying my kingdom. I was the mightiest of all the Kings. Yet today, the Kingdom and all its pleasure have gone. I am here trying to escape from enemies. However when those days of luxuries have gone, this day of danger too will pass. Calm come on his face. He kept standing there. The place where he was standing was full of natural beauty. He had never known that such a beautiful place was also a part of his Kingdom. The revelation of the message had a great effect on him. He relaxed and forgot about those following him. After a few minutes he realized that the noise of the horses and the enemy coming was receding. They moved into some other part of the mountains and were not on that path. The King was very brave. He reorganized his army and fought again. He defeated the enemy and regained his lost empire. When he returned to his empire after victory, he was received with much fan fare at the door. The whole capital was rejoicing in the victory. Everyone was in a festive mood. Flowers were being thrown on the King from every house, from every corner. People were dancing and singing. For a moment King said to himself,” I am one of the bravest and greatest Kings. It is not easy to defeat me..:
With all the reception and celebration he saw an ego emerging in him. Suddenly the Diamond of his ring flashed in the sunlight and reminded him of the message. He opened it and read it again: “This too will pass” He became silent. His face went through a total change -from the egoist he moved to a state of utter humbleness. If this too is going to pass, it is not yours. The defeat was not yours, the victory is not yours. You are just a watcher. Everything passes by We are witness of all this. We are the perceiver. Life comes and goes. Happiness comes and goes. Sorrow comes and goes. Now as you have read this story, just sit silently and evaluate your own life… Think of the moments of joy and victory in your life. Think of the moment of sorrow and defeat. Are they permanent? They all come and pass away. Life just passes away. There were friends in the past. They have gone. There are friends today. They too will go. There will be new friends tomorrow. They too will go. There were enemies in the past. They have gone. There may be enemies in the present. They too will go. There will be new enemies tomorrow and they too will go. There is nothing permanent in this world. Every thing changes except the law of change. Think over it from your own perspective. You have seen all the changes. You have survived all setbacks, all defeats and all sorrows. All have passed away. If there are problems in the present, they too will pass away, because nothing remains forever. Joy and sorrow are the two faces of the same coin. They both will pass away. “Weeping may remain for a night, but joy comes in the morning”. (Psalm 30:5) Who are you in reality? Know your real face. Your face is not your true face. It will change with the time. However, there is something in you, which will not change. It will remain unchanged. What is that unchangeable? It is nothing but your true self. You are just a witness of change.
A message from Margaret Mainwaring
It sounds too simple but if you put Jesus first in everything you do, think and say, (as far as you are able to, or know how to), everything in life will gradually get better and better as time goes on. (This does not mean that you will not have any problems. It is just that Jesus helps us through any problems we have in this life.) Your priorities will gradually become easier too. You will become more practised as you go on in life and learn more and more about what it means to put Jesus first. The Holy Spirit will teach you all you need to know about this, once you have asked Jesus into your heart and asked Him to be your personal Saviour and LORD. We learn through reading The Holy Bible, praying(pouring your heart out to God) and throughout life, as God guides us through all the joys and sorrows that happen to everyone.
Whoever wants to reach a distant goal must take small steps. — Saul Bellow
I recommend that you watch The Revelation TV Channel on Sky channel number 581 or Freesat channel 692 and Roku Box UK and USA. You can also watch programmes on their website at http://www.revelationtv.com/ They are a Christian channel. They have live, interactive programmes, which are wonderful for people who are lonely and many programmes that help people learn about the love of God and how to live the Christian life. The presenters and guests make you feel that you are part of the Church family.
If you feel you need God in your life and you don’t know how to find Him and you feel alone, lost, guilty and frightened, I recommend the website from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association http://www.PeaceWithGod.net