When I face difficult circumstances, I have a choice to make. I look at the facts as they appear, on the one hand, and on the other the awesome character of God revealed in Scripture. Comparing the two, my trial is no match for the love, mercy, and enabling strength of God in Christ. The “facts as they appear” is an important distinction here. Often our perception of reality is distorted by stress, fear, and dread. There will be times when our circumstances are truly dire, yet God is bigger than anything we encounter.
By feeding our hearts and minds on Scripture, we are strengthened by the Holy Spirit. We learn that God is our loving conqueror. Though we so often stumble, we have a patient and gracious Father whose love radiates our lives with joy. To fully trust God is to lay aside our own striving as wasted and exhausting effort. Instead, we completely put ourselves in the hands of our Father.
We cannot live in His strength by merely owning a Bible. We must read it regularly. Contrary to what is assumed, faith is not blind or passive. It engages us at the deepest levels. Scripture describes neglecting the truths of Christ as living on milk and staying an infant. We are ill prepared for our own emotional struggles or what the world throws at us if we are immature in understanding. Thankfully, this can be remedied for any believer. By partaking of the solid food of the Word, we grow and are transformed.
Artwork: © Jeffrey M Green. "Lighthouse Reflections", 9 x 12", colored pencils.