Responding to SufferingHow do you feel when your life is interrupted by suffering and adversity?
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by Sanctus Real
As I go further and further down the road of life I find less and less hope in the world around me. I sometimes wonder if it's just that I'm older, not as easily excited and maybe slightly more cynical than I was as say a sixteen year old young man. Or maybe it just really is a harder world to live in than when we were all younger. Everywhere I look I see people losing hope because they've lost their job, lost a loved one, are battling sickness, going through divorce, lost their retirement, are buried in debt, entangled in sin, losing their home, living life alone, battling addiction, depression, anxiety, anger, suicidal thoughts… The list goes on and on. The one and only way we can find true hope that won't ever fail us and can't ever be taken away from us is to look to the thousands of promises that God has given to His people through His Word. Promises like:
"The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged." (Deuteronomy 31:8)
"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness." (1 John 1:9)
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" (2 Corinthians 2:17)
"Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus..." (Romans 8:1)
"So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." (Matthew 6:31)
"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." -Jesus (John 16:33)
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 4:6)
"For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:38)
Once again, the list goes on and on but this list is one that we can draw hope, peace and joy from. God's promises are eternal. They are not confined to the circumstances of this world or by what's going on in our daily lives. God's promises are bigger and more powerful than any of that. When your situation looks like a "No," God's promises are a "Yes" in Jesus Christ!
"For no matter how many promises God has made, they are "Yes" in Christ. And so through him the "Amen" is spoken by us to the glory of God." (2 Corinthians 2:20)
So hold on to the promises!