Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Looking to the Coming Year with Apprehension?

"Shadows, Water, and Light", 16 x 20", colored pencils.
The coming year is bringing rejoicing - or at least revelry - to many. Do you instead look to the coming year with apprehension and anxiety? Are there things you are burdened  with?

Having struggled with anxiety my whole life, no less now that I am no longer shut away from the world, it helps me to remember that the God we read of in Scripture is still the same God today. He is a God of power, mercy, and renewed grace each day. In the modern era we can sometimes so cloud our reasoning with science and every presumption that we miss the fact that God is a God of awesome power.

This does not mean our trials will be dealt with instantly like magic, or that we will be awash in cash like the TV preachers tell us - if we first give it to them. The victories we see in a few sentences in Scripture are often filled with many years of struggle between. Those who lived then are much like us today, they had the same trials, the same fears, the same weaknesses and sin.

God does have a purpose for suffering. Without it we can not learn to trust Him alone. One might even say, that if in the midst of our pain we do not seek Him, or have not received His Son, our trials are ultimately wasted in the sense that it could of been a tool to open up the beauty of God for us. Though no one welcomes hardship, the closer we are to Him, the more the heart knows a joy that transcends.

Whatever I am facing today, I know my God is my joy, my contentment, my strength when all else fails. I know that any so called strength of my own should and will fail. I must completely get out of the way. In the grace of Christ, a mighty God in unapproachable light is brought tenderly near in intimacy.

“Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh; is anything too difficult for Me?” Jeremiah 32:27.

Artwork: © Jeffrey M Green. "Shadows, Water, and Light", 16 x 20", colored pencils.

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