|Father Knows Best|
"Pass Me Not"
So you're saved, redeemed, and delivered - you're born-again! You're washed in the precious blood, had your sin forgiven and been made white as snow. You've been filled with the Spirit, been baptized in water and have become a new creation in Christ Jesus. You're an heir of God and a joint heir with Jesus Christ. You've been set free and made the righteousness of God in Christ. You're blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places, been made to triumph in Christ. You're the head and not the tail, above only and not beneath and have been given authority over the devil and his kingdom. You are free from poverty, sickness and disease and have been given the keys of the kingdom.... "BUT WAIT!!!"
"You don't know what I'm going through, the struggles that I'm facing, the pressure that I'm under. I thought becoming a Christian was going to make life easier, no problems or trials. WHAT'S HAPPENING!!!"
Try not to get discouraged, it's just time to grow up. (Oh, is that all!) The first thing to remember is that God really is in control, and the trial that you are going through is allowed by God so that you would begin to apply the knowledge and understanding that you have from the Word of God and come into a new level of spiritual maturity.
1 Corinthians 10:13 says: "No temptation has overtaken you except that which is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear (endure) it."
I love this scripture, and you ought to be shouting a great big hallelujah with me! Even though the devil is telling you that you're going under and you're not going to make it, this Scripture puts that lie to rest! Remember, Jesus said in John 8:44 that satan is the father of lies! And our God who cannot lie (Hebrews 6:18) said He will not allow you to be tested or tempted beyond what you would be able to bear. In other words, in His great foreknowledge, God is confident you will be able to stand through your situation, or He would not have allowed it to come your way.
He also said in this Scripture that He would provide a way of escape. One sure way of escape is always through standing on the promises of His Word. Faith or trust in God's Word works. "Yeah, I tried that faith stuff for a whole week and nothing happened." HOLD ON NOW! Faith isn't something that you try, it's something that you do - it's a lifestyle. In fact, Romans 1:17 tells us that the just (that's us) shall live (flourish) by faith. Faith is God's prescribed method for us (the church) to live by. Faith in God, faith in His Word.
What we need to realize is that faith has a partner, and its name is patience. Faith keeps its course and continues on track because of patience. In fact, patience is so important that in James 1:2 it says if we allow patience to mature in our lives we will lack nothing!!! For more understanding on the winning combination of faith and patience and their very important role together see our article Living A Dream.
There is another aspect of biblical patience that is often overlooked. In Luke 21, Jesus is talking about things to come in the end times, and I might say He paints a pretty tough picture. Then in verse 19 He says, "By your patience possess your souls." The actual Greek text reads, "In the patience of you, you will possess the souls of you."
The Greek word for soul in this scripture reference is psuche, which is the root word for our english word psychology - the study of the mind. Psuche basically describes our mind, will, intellect and emotions. Hey, isn't this the part of our make up that gives us the most problems? I know I have to fight with mine more than I'd like to admit. This is also the area where the enemy attacks us the most. He knows if he can get to our emotions and convince our intellect that the circumstance we're facing in life are too powerful for us to stand against - we will make the decision to give up and quit, thus thwarting our own spiritual growth.
I think we all have seen great displays of emotion from people who were obviously immature and needed special attention. And because of where they were in life, they were not able to take advantage of the greater blessings that God has to offer, primarily because their soul was in possession of them instead of they being in possession of their soul.
Praise God! Every time we have to enact the force of patience we should be rejoicing in the fact that we are taking another step forward in getting things set in the proper order, that we're gaining a better grip on our soul! And as it says in the Book of James, that's the road to maturity and completeness.
By staying in faith and not giving up, we allow patience to have its perfect work so that we will become mature and grow up spiritually. We will therefore know how to apply the Word of God in the face of adversity, with a firm understanding of who we are in Christ, knowing with great certainty that He always watches over His Word to perform it! (Jer. 1:12)
This is the will of God for every believer. We need to submit to God and His Word, and allow His plan for our lives to succeed. Let's not short circuit His plan by refusing to grow up. Let's stop running away from the hardships in life and take a frim stand upon the Word of God, in partnership with the Spirit of God, and take a stand of faith and allow the power of God to be manifested. We've done it our way long enough, and one thing is for sure, our way will generally lead to disaster and will certainly keep us from spiritual maturity.
The plan for your life is found in John 10:10. He wants you to have and experience the abundant life. It's your inheritance. Don't settle for anything less. Be patient and allow God's maturing process to take root in you because after all, Father knows best!