How To Respond When Life Happens
I think we can all agree that life can be difficult sometimes. Just when things are going good, a wrench gets thrown in the spokes and everything falls apart. When those things happen, our tendency is to try to figure out what caused it. Was it the devil? Was it the result of a fallen world? Was is just some jerk that wants to make you miserable?
We spend so much time trying to figure out what’s causing our pain we completely ignore what can set us free from it!
The truth is, it doesn’t matter what caused the destruction. Nothing, whether it’s the devil, the fallen world, or sin, has any power over you. Jesus destroyed the works of the enemy, has elevated you to the right hand of the Father in heavenly places above anything this world can throw at you, and has taken away sin’s power in your life. When our focus is on the cause of the problem, we are giving power back to those things. It is vital that we keep our attention on the power that God has given us through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus.
The Cross Worked!
You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.
1 John 4:4
There is nothing in this world that can take away what Jesus accomplished 2,000 years ago. Why? Because the cross worked! Your sins don’t hold more power than the blood of Christ! Religion will tell you sin is the cause of your problems, but if that were the case, then Christ died in vain (Gal 2:21).
The Darkest Moments
In Genesis 37, Joseph’s brothers threw him in the bottom of a pit after he shared his God-given dreams with them. Again, the reason why he ended up in the pit are irrelevant. The fact of the matter is Joseph was in a very dark place—figuratively and literally.
Most people in this scenario would have given up. We say things like, “Isn’t a life with God supposed to be easy? I thought everything was supposed to go my way when I am seeking His direction!” We forget about every single person in the Bible.
Paul sought after God’s will and he ended up in prison, shipwrecked, snake bitten, and was even stoned to death. Jesus himself lived to fulfill the will of His Father and we all know what happened to Him.
Be Of Good Cheer!
I’m not saying these things to discourage you, but to give you hope. When you are in your darkest moment, you can still trust that God is right there with you. He didn’t cause your pain, but He is there to carry you through.
I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]
We were never promised to live a problem-free life, but we have been given the power to overcome. I believe when Joseph was at the bottom of that pit, he continued praising God. By keeping his eyes on the prize, he was lifted out of that pit and placed on solid ground.
I wish I could tell you that Joseph never had another problem; that by seeking God he got out of that pit and immediately became Pharaoh’s right-hand man. That didn’t happen. He got out of the pit, became a slave, was accused of something he didn’t do, and ended up in prison. But throughout everything, he never gave up. He never forgot the dream God placed on the inside of him and, because of that, he eventually became the second most powerful man in all of Egypt!
How Do You Respond?
Regardless of the cause, bad stuff happens. How do you respond? Do you cower in fear? Do you lose all hope? Do you maintain your focus on the truth? Do you blame God? Are you able to praise God at the bottom of the pit?
Keeping your focus on what God has placed in you will not only change your attitude, it will change your circumstances. It might not always work out the way you thought it would, but be of good cheer. Jesus has deprived the world of its power to harm you and has conquered it for you. When you keep your trust in that, everything changes.