Faith is the Victory
Posted on July 12, 2018 by America's Keswick in Freedom Fighters
“Many Christians estimate difficulty in the light of their own resources, and thus they attempt very little and they always fail. All giants have been weak men who did great things for God because they reckoned on His power and presence to be with them.” ~ James Hudson Taylor
The reason we fail to attempt great things or run away from great challenges is we forget, or never even knew, how great God is.
Paul describes a time when he was overwrought with anxiety and fear, that even though God had opened a door for which His gospel would stir a community, Paul ‘had no rest in his spirit’ and left, unable to see our God at work in the lives of those in Troas (2 Corinthians 2:12-13). Paul is giving us a peek behind the curtain of his life, revealing a weakness of his heart, one that I very much understand. How often I think it is my strength and resources that are necessary to accomplish a task, when in reality it is God’s work and God’s resources and I am but the one that God is working through by faith. How often I have finished a class or sent out a devotional thinking I had failed or come up short somehow. Or maybe even considered, ‘no one is listening, why I should say anything at all’ … What I am forgetting, along with Paul, is that ‘God is always leading us in triumph, in Jesus Christ!’ His Word never fails in its work. It is always drawing us to an understanding of God’s love, or it is convicting us of sin… causing us to choose to move towards God, or harden our hearts and pursue our own selfish ambition.
The victorious Christian life to which God has called us through Jesus our Savior, is not an endless journey of Disney rides where danger and fear never touch us because we are belted in some car; No the victorious life of Christ is full of scars from battle after battle of remaining faithful to Him, crucifying our will, suffering rejection, sickness, hardship, and even loneliness and afflictions at times. But none of this is for NO reason, remember what Paul said in the beginning of the letter? “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ” (2 Cor 1:3-5). Paul goes on to explain that if we are afflicted it is so we are qualified to share God’s comfort and salvation effectively with those in our area of influence. Paul wants us to understand that God allows such afflictions so ‘we will not trust in ourselves, but in the God who raises the dead’; it is on Him we set our Hope. And He will deliver us! The ‘sufferings’ are the classroom that qualify us and form our effectiveness, so thanks be to God for the education!
Our God is at work through us, in us, and around us…regardless of our affliction or circumstances, accomplishing His redemptive work of salvation. When we realize this truth, we will cry out from the heart as well, “But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere” (2 Corinthians 2:14).
Praying you choose Christ today.
Written by David Brown: David Brown is a husband, father, and grandfather with a Masters of Religious Studies and a Professor of Philosophy and Comparative Religions. Dave is a member of Pemberton’s First Baptist Church.
Daily Quote: “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”- Martin Luther King Jr.
This Week’s Verse to Memorize:
Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help, Whose hope is in the Lord his God, Psalm 146:5