~John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
~Acts 14:22 Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.
~Romans 5:3 And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
~2 Corinthians 1:4 Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.
The Christian life was not promised to be a bed of roses or a cake walk. Quite the contrary, actually! We are warned that as believers we will most certainly go through trials and tribulations in life. But Christ does not leave us abandoned with no hope and no help, amen?! He gives us Scriptures to encourage ourselves so we do not fall into despair.
I love how He uses nature itself to speak to us. I heard a message by Pastor Mike Ray of Hopewell Baptist Church using salmon as an example. In summary, he stated that it takes no effort for a dead salmon to float downstream. However, it takes great effort for a salmon to swim upstream. It’s a constant battle. Pastor Ray compared going downstream as going the way of the world. This takes no effort at all. But for the believer who wants to walk with Christ, it takes great effort. Our walk will be difficult. Just do research on what a salmon goes through to swim upstream. It will bless your soul as you compare it to your walk with the Lord.
I love the picture used today. The world’s bears are waiting for us as we separate ourselves from the things of the world. But we are not alone. The Lord promises us that He is with us every step of the way!
~Romans 8:35-39 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Paul tells us that he’s persuaded that nothing separates the believer from Christ’s love. Nothing! Glory to God in the highest! We are conquerors, my friend. Not by anything we do in our flesh – but by everything that Jesus Christ does through us! So whatever your cross is which you are called to bear, do it joyfully and with great peace in your heart knowing that the Lord is there! No one else can carry your cross for you. It is yours to carry. Use your life experiences and lessons learned from the Word to help another! Keep your mind fixed on what is coming soon – life with the Lord in Heaven for all eternity. Our trials and tribulations will soon be behind us! It makes our journey seem shorter, doesn’t it?
Let’s encourage each other in these last days! Let’s be busy doing the Lord’s work and leading the lost to Him using our life experiences that He has blessed us with. These things alone will keep our thoughts away from our trials.