You have followed God, listened to Him, felt His presence… but now something has gone terribly wrong. The choices you made to follow God have culminated in what appears to be a disaster. Your life feels like it is in shambles. Everyone around you has words of wisdom, opinions, ideas of what you should do now.
But you have either tried everything they are saying or know it is not the right choice. Yes, you could easily fix your situation, change it, take control… but those choices would be unbiblical or completely the wrong direction… and worse, they go directly against what God is telling you.
You are struggling, tired, doubting what you thought you knew you heard, scared, weak, alone and losing hope.
Dear friend, I know what you are going through is terrible and confusing. And if you can take heart in one thing, take heart in this, “Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was very hungry.” – Luke 4:1-2, NIV.
Ah, I can see your eye roll from here. Yes, I totally just made you read about Jesus and his testing/tempting. Why? Because it applies to this situation, and, when read closely might give you some encouragement.
Jesus, on a spiritual high, followed God’s direction into the wilderness. By the end of his forty days, he was tired, weak, alone, and so very hungry.
- But this wasn’t because he had misheard God
- This wasn’t because God had forsaken him.
- This wasn’t because he started out right and then got sidetracked…
He was exactly in the right. And sure, he could easily fix his situation, change it, take control… but those choices would be unbiblical and completely the wrong direction. They would be directly against what God wanted Jesus to do. Even though any onlookers, any friends, and wise council would remind him he could easily fix his situation.
So the devil tempted him. Played on his hunger – not at the beginning of the journey, but near the end – when the thoughts might have already been developing. Jesus’ only defense was what he knew to be true; the Word of God. And that pesky devil grew smart and used the Word of God to distract him.
The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down from here. For it is written: ‘he will command his angels concerning you to guard you carefully; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.'” Jesus answered, “It is said: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.'” When the devil had finished all this tempting, he left him until an opportune time.” – Luke 4:9-13, NIV.
So much can be drawn from this passage, but for today, I shall leave you with this:
- Sometimes we must walk through the hardest of times.
- Our only defense is what we know to be true.
- Not only those who are for us know scripture.
- We must test all opinions and advice (even from friends) against scripture.
- The devil doesn’t leave for good, he just waits for his next opportune time.
If you are struggling and being bombarded by everyone’s advice, seek out someone who is willing to sit and be your friend. Someone who doesn’t feel the need to push you in any direction, but who will have a cup of coffee with you and enjoy your company. This will be a great salve to your soul.
If you are not in the midst of a struggle, but know someone who is. Consider being a friend. Not a mentor, not someone full of ways for them to fix their life, just a friend. Pray about this and see what happens.
Until next time,
Bee the difference!