The final discouragement to pound the afflicted or fallen believer is the lie that they are inadequate to serve God. “God is finished with me” is the echoing cry that reaches our ears from the pit of hell. Believe with me, the opposite is true!
Whether battling torrents of trials and heartache or clawing out of a miry pit of sin, the decisive heart toward God, willing to believe and obey, opens every opportunity for spiritual victory. In our weakest, even defeated condition, Sovereign God confounds the powers of hell and prevails over them.
Walking in victory, forging ahead for the Kingdom of God, is not at all contingent upon our physical abilities, mental capacities, finances, or social status. In fact, those personal ‘strengths’ often prove to be subtle snares, leading us to depend upon our resources. In whatever the Lord brings upon us, whatever He takes away, whatever He allows inflicted upon us…we must hold on to the truth that He is in charge of this temporary suffering.
If we continue in faith, no matter how weak it seems, the Lord will use our tears to mold the clay for divine purposes. In His hands, our suffering has great value!
In his sermon, “Don’t Waste Your Afflictions”, Pastor David Wilkerson preaches,
“We want quick-and-easy deliverance. But our afflictions serve no purpose whatsoever if we do not understand why God permits them. The truth is that every affliction, trial, trouble, difficulty and disappointment in our life is allowed by the Lord. And He has a specific purpose behind all of them. Why? it is because He is taking u somewhere–trying to accomplish something in us and through us!” (printed sermon available online)
Whether we are chastised from sin or amidst a storm or wandering in a spiritual wilderness the devil will harass with the same lies, “God has abandoned you”, “You’ve sinned once too many times”, “You are useless and weak, your best days are over and done!” Not so with God.
The word of God demonstrates the victory of God through fallen and weakened man over and over, too many times to list in post here! Many of the testimonies of suffering, struggling, defeat and affliction are well known. But not only must we open the Bible and find these refreshing truths but we must believe that God is ready to intervene in our lives as well.
When our lives are trampled upon and damaged, the greatest challenge in healing and recovery is finding security once again in God’s love. All the human effort and intellect may be unable to configure our suffering with ‘love’. It may seem impossible to believe but there are times when we need only be willing to believe.
The willingness to believe opens the window of heaven. When our world is rocked, the willingness to believe positions us before the word of God and awaits living waters to pour out upon us and revive us, even if it seems drop by drop. Our healing comes through our willingness to drink.
We need not be healed, happy, healthy or prosperous to be victorious servants of God. In fact, the Lord seems to excel through broken vessels.
“Though You have made me see troubles, many and bitter, You will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth You will again bring me up.” Psalm 71:20
In these last days, we must decide to ‘face forward’. Our Savior Jesus Christ won the victory over sin and we are forgiven all. While in this world however, He does not promise to remove all suffering nor repair all damage. Given to Him, He is uses all affliction with divine purpose for His Kingdom and glory.
Let us not wait until we feel whole, totally healed, or even ‘happy’ to avail ourselves to God’s service. Let us not ‘Waste Our Afflictions’ but present ourselves, in whatever state we’re in, as a living sacrifice unto God. (Romans 12) The ‘gifts’ He bestows upon us to serve and honor Him are not at all contingent on merit or ability!
I believe that our greatest healing and restoration comes when, even in our weak and broken conditions, we position ourselves before God in prayer with a decided willingness to believe in His undying love. The certainty of God’s love in our hearts opens our faith again, even stronger, and avails His living waters to flow into us and through us into the lives of others. That is great and profound joy that overcomes the darkness.
Totally well written. Love the post and love the message it highlights.
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Thank you so much for your visit and encouraging words! 🌹
Hi Lisa – this really speaks to my heart! I remember feeling as if God was punishing me right after my injury occurred. It took almost a year for me to get reconnected to him, but I’m so glad I did. I’ve seen so many good things come from my quadriplegia. As always, thank you for a great post.
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Hi Terri! I always say it’s so good to hear from you because it is! I’m so glad this encouraged you. “As iron sharpens iron” I pray that we may refresh one another in the Lord until His glorious return. Looking forward to your next post dear sister! 🌷
Wow! Sister Lisa, this is totally me right now! There are so many statements in here that thrust through me like a sword! This statement “those personal ‘strengths’ often prove to be subtle snares, leading us to depend upon our resources”, I have had my eyes on these subtle snares and they’ve distracted me from beholding Christ who is the author and finisher of my faith.
Also, these words “We need not be healed, happy, healthy or prosperous to be victorious servants of God. In fact, the Lord seems to excel through broken vessels” the Holy Spirit stirred up in me through this! I’ve been so discouraged lately with many things; ministry, the church I pastor, God’s moving in my everyday life; etc. So many things seem to be pulling me under.
Thank you so much for posting this. In these weak times, I do not seek for those who seem to never struggle or even attempt to tell me “if I’m having trouble in my Christian life, then I must be doing something wrong;” no. My inner being looks for those who’ve been in a similar fire. I can tell you’ve been there sister Lisa, and have come forth like gold!
Thanks again. I know you have many burdens, but as the Lord reminds you, please remember me in prayer.
With Love in Christ
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Thank you brother for your fellowship through these posts. Anchored in the Cross is a source of strength and truth for so many people, esp me! I cannot forget you in prayer and trust the Lord to undergird you in every way. Your sister in Christ, Lisa
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