There is a gathering cloud of anxiety shrouding many in our nation today regardless of affiliation of either faith or politics. Levels of doubt, fear, and worry increase even as the enormity of Hurricane Sandy’s impact continues to spread. Coupled with catastrophic property damage, loss of life, loss of home and/or livelihood, and the presidential election on the horizon, even those who were without stress a few days ago are now experiencing dis-stress.
What are we to do? To whom do we look for help?
People who do not confess a sovereign God and who know Jesus Christ as nothing more than historical figure or myth have precious few options. Unless their neighbors or their government step in they are justified in their despair.
Oswald Chambers addressed this question in the October 31st entry found in My Utmost for His Highest. May I share a few words of wisdom today, not from my understanding, but from this most humble servant of Christ?
“God has frequently to knock the bottom board out of your experience if you are a saint in order to get you into contact with Himself. “
A Trial of Faith
“Faith by its very nature must be tried, and the real trial of faith is not that we find it difficult to trust God, but that God’s character has to be cleared in our own minds. Faith in its actual working out has to go through spells of unsyllabled isolation. Never confound the trial of faith with the ordinary discipline of life. Much that we call the trial of faith is the inevitable result of being alive.
Faith in the Bible is the faith in God against every thing that contradicts Him — I will remain true to God’s character whatever He may do. “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him” — this is the most sublime utterance of faith in the whole of the Bible.”
Confronting God’s Character and Our Mortality
Many will condemn God as a monster deity for allowing people to suffer and perish. God causes the wind to blow as He wills, the earth to tremble or not, and victory given to one human perspective over another. Faith must be unwavering in belief that God is a loving Father and everything will work for our good at the end of the day. (Romans 8:28)
If we understood God’s every action in real time, what need would there be for faith? What need would there be for Christ?
Questioning God’s motive is mutiny. As Chambers says, trials of faith teach us to believe God is who He says and none other. To think otherwise is to place our own understanding and value set above His.
Will any among us escape this world alive? Not unless Rapture comes. Each of us will, in our turn and in our time, be slain. To be slain is to die, to pass from mortal life into death. Why do we make such a big deal about the circumstances and timing. “Though He slay me…” indeed.
Be Anxious for Nothing
Man has not changed in 2000 years. Jesus said that worry is a pointless error. [Matthew 6:25] This very phrase, “Be anxious for nothing”, is found in Philippians 4:6. It’s truth applies to Christians every bit as much today as it did in the first century.
So, what should we do and to whom do we look for support, for salvation from our trials?
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
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