I’ve written often about the pains and struggles that we all face in this world. It doesn’t matter who you are, there is not anyone who has not had to face trials and sorrows, pain and suffering, temptation and sin. It’s a simple fact of our fallen world. I know there are some of you right now, who are going your own personal hell where it feels like no matter how hard you try, you just can’t seem to see the light at the end of the tunnel. You find it difficult to see where God is at work in your life. You could be someone that has been full of faith, prays, and walks with the Lord, but then something comes along that just knocks the wind out of your sails. I’ve read the book, “Heaven is For Real” and my family and I sat and watched it yesterday. The Burpo family was going through some serious struggles of their own. This was a family where the Dad and Husband is a pastor and they are all about their faith. Boy does it get tested though, especially when their son falls ill and nears death.
Often times, the more locked into our faith we are, the tougher the struggles are and the harder and faster the arrows come to pierce our hearts. My pastor, Tim, said in his sermon yesterday, that if you are locked in your faith, the devil is more ticked off now that your heart has turned to God, so he will come at you even harder. This is so true too. In my faith walk these last few years, there are times where I just get bombarded with junk, whether it’s how I respond with my attitude, junk from my past trying to creep back, or new struggles and temptations that try to pierce into me. I have to fight just as much. We all do.
There’s one thing I’ve learned for sure with all of this, however. The best thing we can ever hope to do, no matter how hard things may get is keep our eyes fixed on God. David said in Psalm 42, “Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart sad? I will put my hope in Go! I will praise Him again – my Savior and my God!” No matter how much junk tries to eat at us in this life, we have to keep focused on God. Our hope lies in our faith in Jesus Christ. Because of the love of God shown by the blood of Christ we have overcome just as Christ overcame. We are already victorious through Him! In my church we have been going through the book of 1 John. 1 John 5:4 says, “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world-our faith.” Our faith gives us victory and sets us free if we can keep our hearts fixed on God.
I ponder on this daily when I sit in my Scripture reading and prayer time or just when I am wandering through the day thinking. I think just how awesome God’s love is for everyone of us. I can’t think or fathom anything greater than the love of God. I used to not ever think about this. God would cross my mind, but never in such a way that I just sat in awe of His glory and love.
We are in a constant war in this life. As I’ve said before, God is always pursuing our hearts to turn to Him, but the adversary is trying to use this world and his demons to attack us daily. Trying to eat at our souls and our hearts to make it impossible to keep our hearts fixed on God. Know that through Christ you are made victorious. There’s nothing more freeing than to know that. Because of our faith, we are born again of God and are His children. His love will never fail or abandon us.
Romans 8:39 says, “No power in the sky above or in the earth below – indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Meditate on that. How awesome is that to know. Yes, we will tested and attached constantly in our life. Sin will always try to win out. But if you are faithful and in those times of struggle keep your hearts and thoughts fixed on God, know that He is always there to pull you through. There’s a framed picture in the entry way of my home that says, “The will of God will never take you where the grace of God will not protect you.” God will never abandon you to this world. Even if it feels like all hope is fading, that’s when you need to lock in more.
The Christian life is never rosy and perfect. John Piper said, “There is a war going on. All talk of a Christian’s right to live luxuriously “as a child of the King” in this atmosphere sounds hollow — especially since the King himself is stripped for battle.” We are victorious in Christ because of the unfailing love of the Father who has never stopped pursuing us. He is constantly ready to go to battle for us.