WHEN YOU HAVE COVID19 AND OTHER SEVERE TRIALS

Let me preface this by saying, I do not and have not had COVID19, and pray that I that I never do. The agonies of this disease of those I know that have gone through it are real and can be very severe. But beyond COVID19, there are many trials and situations in life that are equally, if not even more so real and severe. 

James 1:2 says 

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds.”

These are easy words to read and understand when the trial is a lack of funds and “How am I going to pay all my bills this month?” or “Why does my boss have to put so much pressure on me for something that is really seams so trivial?” James goes on to say in verses 3-5 to say 

“because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”

These verses help deal with these kinds of trials easier when we give ourselves over to God and believe and trust these words.

But when the seriousness of the situation approaches something like COVID19, where there does not seem to be a real medical solution yet, no manmade light at the end of the tunnel, our confidence wanes, trust withers, nervousness rises, and hope fades. 

To keep from falling into greater depths of despair, we must consciencelessly, without fail, turn our minds and hearts to Christ, who is in all things, God the creator and savior of our souls. To all who believe, He is the Great Healer. Romans 8:28 says, 

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

We also know he wants us to totally depend on Him and not to worry. Matthew 25:26-27, Jesus tells us directly,

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?”

Therefore, regardless of your trial or burden, be it financial, relational, job oriented, COVID19, or something else, trust, or begin to learn to trust in Him. One way to do this is to ask Him for peace and find a “GO-TO” verse or scripture passage that you can read over and over. Write this verse in every corner of your mind and to the deep reaches of your heart so it permeates your spirit. For me, this GO-TO verse is The 23rd Psalm. For me, the verse are almost magical. Reading them creates peace in my heart and in my spirit, and I can literally feel the stress leave my physical body as the Holy Spirit works through these scriptures. There is no other scripture like it for me. It has helped me through the darkest, most stressful times of my life.

So be encouraged. Be hopeful. Be strong. Put your hope in Christ, no matter the situation. His will WILL be done and your strength in Him will be a testimony to Him for others to see, and that alone may change someone else’s life, which may be His purpose in allowing your trial to begin with. He knows you can endure. He knows your salvation is secure. Your trust in Him in those things is all that matters. Jesus endured the pain and suffering of the cross, knowing He had his life in eternity and that He was serving the Father’s purpose by dieing on the cross. He knew His crucifixion and eventual resurrection would change countless lives. He knew all of that was the Father’s will, even when in one human moment when he asked if it could be taken from him, he still said, but let Your will be done. And it was. How can we ask or expect less? Our pain and suffering, whether through stress or affliction, is nothing compared to Jesus’. 

So consider it pure consider it pure joy, ask for wisdom, and pray for peace. God bless you as you endure!

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The Father’s Eyes

Matthew 19:14 Jesus said,

“Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

Have you ever walked a mile in someone else’s shoes?

Have you ever looked at others through someone else’s eyes?

This is the last lesson I learned from my mother before she died. I learned to look at my children though her eyes. I learned to see their innocence as she saw them. Later I sensed the Lord telling me to look at everyone not through my mother’s eyes but through His, to see everyone as He sees them. Doing this can change your entire outlook on others. People who had habits or mannerisms that pestered you no longer do. You do not see that. You know their hearts and the individual as Christ loves them.

We are a visual society. Television, movies, computers and other sources constantly bombard us with images of one sort or another. The movie “BIG” is an older movie with Tom Hanks. This is the story of a boy who wishes to be big, and overnight, his wish is granted. He goes to sleep as a boy and wakes up the next morning as a physically full-grown Tom Hanks.

I remember standing over the bed of each of my children when they were little. I would try to imagine what they would look like when they would grow to be a teenager. What would their voices sound like? What things would they like to do? I would then ponder the same questions again looking at them as adults. As they have grown older, it is heartwarming to glance back and see how far they have come.

Obviously, a visual person, it makes sense that when I attempt to look at others through Jesus’ eyes that I tend to visualize that person, as a child of God, standing before the Lord and personally seeing His acceptance and outpouring of love toward them. Imagine looking at an elder of your church, sixty or seventy years old, and then seeing them as a child, standing before the Lord. Envision their reaction and His. This little exercise I have repeated often, and it has deepened my appreciation for those around me, regardless of their demeanor and actions. As children of God, they are forgiven of their sins; therefore, they will stand before the King with childlike innocence. Matthew 18:3 quotes the Savior in this way,

“And he said: ‘I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.’”

I visualize those elders, and everybody else that believes in Christ Jesus, standing there looking up into His eyes with awe, as a child who deeply admires their father. They will be reaching with outstretched arms to hug their loving Father and feel the protection of His arms around them. They are indeed children of God and are deeply loved by Him. As we strive ourselves to be a child of the King, we should also love and view at our brothers as nothing less.

© 2018 Marty Hill – Administered By Quaddot Productions – All Rights Reserved

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