Category: Trials

But I kept the Faith!

David Wilkersonby David Wilkerson

Paul kept his faith through good times and bad.

In his final days Paul could boast, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith” (2 Timothy 4:7). Think about Paul’s testimony at that point. He could say, “Satan sent messengers to fight me in Jerusalem, Damascus, Asia, Ephesus, Antioch, and Corinth. But I kept the faith.

“He tried to sink me in the storm-tossed Mediterranean. Three times I was shipwrecked, bobbing in the deep, night and day. But I kept the faith.

“Five times the Jews beat me with thirty-nine stripes. I have been cast into prison, three times beaten with rods, stoned and left for dead. But I kept the faith.

“I’ve faced peril in the country and the city, in the wilderness and the sea. I’ve been robbed by my own countrymen. I’ve been placed in peril by false brethren. But I kept the faith.

“I’ve been extremely weary at times, full of bodily pains, enduring sleepless nights. I’ve been hungry and thirsty, cold and naked, heavily laden with cares of all kinds. Yet I kept the faith.

“I’ve been troubled, perplexed on every side, distressed and persecuted, but never cast down. I’ve never been shaken in my faith. Through it all, my trust in the Lord has never been destroyed” (see 2 Corinthians 11:23-28).

Beloved don’t fall for the devil’s lies when you are endure trials, chastening or troubles. Do not allow a root of bitterness to enter your heart and begin nurturing anger toward God: “Why did the Lord allow this? I tried so hard to please him, trusting him so much. Why is he letting me down?” God has warned us about such times: “Don’t let this happen. Instead, be diligent, be careful, holding onto your confidence. It has great recompense of reward.” (Hebrews 10:35-36, my paraphrase)

Rather remember that he says for us to “Call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me” (Psalms 50:15). May you remain faithful to call on him in your trial. Cast your cares on him always!

by David Wilkerson

 

Crises of Love

A.W. Tozerby A.W. Tozer

And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. Romans 5:5

If we lived in a spiritual Utopia where every wind blew toward heaven and every man was a friend of God, we Christians could take everything for granted, counting on the new life within us to cause us to do the will of God without effort and more or less unconsciously. Unfortunately we have opposing us the lusts of the flesh, the attractions of the world and the temptations of the devil. These complicate our lives and require us often to make determined moral decisions on the side of Christ and His commandments. It is the crisis that forces us to take a stand for or against.

The patriot may be loyal to his country for half a lifetime without giving much thought to it, but let an unfriendly power solicit him to turn traitor and he will quickly spurn its overtures. His patriotism will be brought out into the open for everyone to see. So it is in the Christian life. When the “south wind blew softly” (Acts 27:13) the ship that carried Paul sailed smoothly enough and no one on board knew who Paul was or how much strength of character lay hidden behind that rather plain exterior. But when the mighty tempest, Euroclydon, burst upon them Paul’s greatness was soon the talk of everyone on the ship. The apostle, though himself a prisoner quite literally took command of the vessel, made decisions and issued orders that meant life or death to the people. And I think the crisis brought to a head something in Paul that had not previously been clear even to him. Beautiful theory was quickly crystallized into hard fact when the tempest struck.

by A.W. Tozer