One of the most difficult questions in life is, “Why did God allow this trouble to come into my life?” We do not always know the answer to the question, “Why?”
- Troubles often appear suddenly and unexpectedly.
Job did not anticipate the great trials that came upon him.
- Troubles are often unexplained.
As far as we can tell, Job never knew in this life about the Heavenly conflict that brought about his troubles.
- Troubles are often extremely difficult.
- Troubles often have hidden benefits.
There are things we learn about our Lord, others, and even ourselves in the time of troubles.
- Troubles can strengthen our faith (if we allow them to).
Though Job struggled to understand what was happening to him, in the end, his faith in God was much stronger than before he faced his troubles.
- Troubles are often part of God’s “chastening” of His children.
Chastening is part of God’s correction in our live, getting us “back on tract” and working to mold us into the person He saved us to be, molding us into the image of Christ.
- Troubles are often part of our conditioning for service.
God may have to put us through times of trouble to equip us for greater use in the future, to enable us to be a greater blessing and help to others as they go through troubles. Many millions of people have found encouragement and strength by reading of Job’s experience.
- Troubles are always designed to bring glory to God in one way or another. See John 9:1-3. Troubles often come our way to show to this world God’s great power, that He is good, and that He can and will give joy and victory even in the darkest of days.
A pearl is a beautiful thing and is highly valued, yet a pearl is the product of great suffering. Troubles in life are inevitable, yet they can be so beneficial.
Paul is encouraging the elders of the Ephesian church and we can glean from his statements to them his “philosophy” of ministry…
- Serve With Humility. (v.19a)
- Expect Opposition. (v.19b,23)
- Be Sure My Walk Matches My Talk. (v.20)
- Focus On Soul Winning. (v.20b)
- Do Not Compromise God’s Message. (v.20a,21-23)
- Be Dedicated To Christ. (v.24)
- Be Joyful. (v.24b)
- Don’t Quit. (v.24b-c)
- Fulfill My Responsibilities. (v.25-27)
- Warn God’s People of Spiritual Dangers. (v.28-31)
- Understand That It Is God That Gives Growth. (v.32)
- Be Content. (v.33-34)
- Be Generous, Hospitable, and Kind. (v.35)
- Saturate My Life and Ministry with Prayer. (v.36)
- Expect Opposition. (v.19b,23)
- Do Not Allow Others To Influence Me Out Of God’s Will. (v.37-38)
Christians worry. New Christians worry, those saved for a long time worry, young people worry, senior citizens worry, Pastors worry, Sunday school teachers worry, bus workers worry, choir members worry. Worry, Worry, Worry! Worry is a very real and serious issue for believers of all ages and stations in life.
The following are observations from the Bible concerning worry…
- Worry Is Distracting.
Six times in this passage “taking thought” is addressed. This does not mean that we should not think about or address these needs, but it does mean that we are not to be anxious or worry about them. Another aspect of the phrase “taking thought” has the idea of “being distracted by.” The Lord is warning us to not allow ourselves to be distracted by the temporal things of this world and life. Worry is distracting.
- Worry Is Demonic.
That is a strong statement. Worldliness can take many forms, a few of which are addressed in our Lord’s sermon here are: hypocrisy, materialism, and worry. Satan tempts the Christian to worry. God never instructs His children to worry. Anything that draws away my focus on, service to, commitment to, and faith in the Lord is of the Devil! Worry is demonic.
- Worry Is Disobedience.
“…I say unto you, take no thought…” This is not a suggestion, it is a clear command. Philippians 4:6, “Be careful for nothing…” The Lord is not suggesting that we simply ignore what we eat, wear, live in, etc., but He clearly commands us not to worry about these things. We cannot allow them to distract us from our faith in God, our service for God, and our focus on the Lord. Worry is disobedience.
O troubled soul, beneath the rod,
Thy Father speaks, be still, be still;
Learn to be silent unto God,
And let Him mould thee to His will.
O praying soul, be still, be still,
He cannot break His plighted Word;
Sink down into His blessed will,
And wait in patience on the Lord.
O waiting soul, be still, be strong,
And though He tarry, trust and wait;
Doubt not, He will not wait too long,
Fear not, He will not come too late.
I got up early one morning
and rushed right into the day;
I had so much to accomplish
that I didn’t have time to pray.
Problems just tumbled about me,
and heavier came each task.
“Why doesn’t God help me?” I wondered.
He answered, “You didn’t ask.”
I wanted to see joy and beauty,
but the day toiled on, gray and bleak;
I wondered why God didn’t show me.
He said, “But you didn’t seek.”
I tried to come into God’s presence;
I used all my keys at the lock.
God gently and lovingly chided,
“My child, you didn’t knock.”
I woke up early this morning,
and paused before entering the day;
I had so much to accomplish
that I had to take time to pray.
A careless word may kindle strife;
A cruel word may wreck a life;
A bitter word may hate instill;
A brutal word may smite or kill.
A gracious word may smooth the way;
A joyous word may light the day;
A timely word may lessen stress;
A loving word may heal and bless.
– Author Unknown
Holy Spirit, light in my heart and soul a burning desire for…
- Purity and godliness.
- The salvation of souls
- The glory of God.
Said the robin to the sparrow,
“I should really like to know,
Why these anxious human beings
Rush about and worry so.”
Said the sparrow to the robin,
“Friend I think that it must be,
That they have no Heavenly Father,
Such as cares for you and me.”
― Elizabeth Cheney