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Patient In Tribulation
8/12/2013

"These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 (NKJV)

If there is one thing we can all struggle with from time-to-time, it is being patient in tribulation.  In fact, these two words almost seem mutually exclusive to each other.   The way I see it (skewed as my vision may be these days) patience and tribulation are about as opposite as night and day.  Usually as tribulation sets in like the darkness of night, patience fades like the light of day.  And yet, we are told the two must now blend and co-exist.  In other words, when tribulation comes, our patience must remain present and not flee.

Q:         How can this happen—how can we be patient in the midst of our trials and tribulation?

The answer resides in our true understanding of God’s love and sovereign plan.  As we have faith in God and trust in His perfect plan, we will have a renewed hope—one allowing us to remain very calm in the midst of the most horrific storm. 

It is only because of our eternal hope that we are able to remain calm as a byproduct.  And this is because God has given us all the assurance necessary to know He is in control, and will use what we are going through for good (Rom. 8:28).  He has told us He will never leave us, nor forsake us (Heb. 13:5).  Knowing we are in the protective hands of the same loving and faithful God who created us should produce the confidence we need to continue to walk in faith and peace during life’s tests.  As we read, study, and meditate on His promises to us, our mind will begin to slowly shift and we will view things quite differently as trust replaces doubt and fear.   

The Apostle Paul realized this truth and experienced this paradigm shift in his own life.  At one point he was persecuting people who believed in Jesus Christ, and then one day he met Jesus on the road to Damascus, and he would never be the same.  His faith and obedience to the Lord would cause him to experience the very persecution and tribulation he had been inflicting upon other believers prior to his conversion. 

God would use this persecution and tribulation for good in Paul’s life, and He will use it for good in the life of every man and woman that loves Him as well (Rom. 8:28). 

Rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. Romans 5:2-5 (NKJV)

Notice we are commanded to “rejoice” in our tribulation; this means to be pleased and glad about it.  We can only be glad if we believe God has allowed it, and He is using it for good.  Life is a matter of perspective—to some the glass is half full, to others it is half empty.  Which way do you see it?  Having a positive attitude is the biggest part of the battle, and this can only happen when we believe something to be good.  If God said he can and will use everything for good, then He can—and that settles it. 

I want to encourage you today, the next time you come to a test, picture God standing on the other side of it, asking you, “Do you trust Me?”  Now patiently walk towards Him in faith.

STUDY QUESTION:  What confidence can we glean from the scriptures contained within this devotional?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Do you find yourself being patient in the midst of tribulation?

APPLICATION: Let’s choose to look at things knowing God is in control and He is allowing these things to happen to us.

Father, thank You for Your protection and Your love.  Thank You for Your faithfulness especially in those times where I have been faithless.  Help to remember that You are in control Lord during these times where I am focusing on the tests or tribulation that I am enduring.  In Jesus precious name, amen…

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

 


Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000