Rejoice! God Is in Control

Romans 5:3-5 (NLT)

3 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they are good for us-they help us learn to endure. 4 And endurance develops strength of character in us, and character strengthens our confident expectation of salvation. 5 And this expectation will not disappoint us. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.

Just ask yourself, “At what point did God lose control?”  How can you argue with that?  He’s GOD!!!  He doesn’t lose control!!!  He’s always caring for your every need.  The Bible is here to remind us that God loves us.  All He asks for in return is for us to obey him.  EVERYTHING He asks our obedience in is for our well-being, not so we can be his slaves.  Christ told us that we are no longer slaves, but friends. John 15:14-15 tells us, “You are my friends if you obey me.  I no longer call you servants, because a master doesn’t confide in his servants.  Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me.”

God really helps me to keep strong through it all.  If I didn’t have Him, I would not have the “confident assurance” that everything is going to work out for the best because we are His children.  (Hebrews 11:1, Romans 8:28Philippians 4:13 says, “For I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need.”  Another way you could word it is “I can make it through anything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need.”

Deuteronomy 31:8 (NLT)

Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD is the one who goes before you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor forsake you.”

My strongest battles are with being alone and no one understanding me.  But the truth is, if you have Christ, you have all you need.  He is your anchor, your shield, and God sent his Counselor (the Holy Spirit) who will never leave you.  (John 14:12-18)

1 Peter 5:8-9 (NLT)

8 Be careful! Watch out for attacks from the Devil, your great enemy. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for some victim to devour. 9 Take a firm stand against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters° all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are.
1 Peter 5:9  Greek your brothers.

The reason for the simile of the Devil and a roaring lion is found in a study of lions.  Young lions are swift and quiet predators.  Old lions are slow, so they intimidate their prey by roaring.  They don’t have the vigor of their youth and so they must scare them into submission.

The lambs, sheep, and goats (Christians) have the strength and ability of the Shepherd (Christ) to protect us from the old lion (the Devil) and get back to the safe haven of the fold (John 10).  Instead of fleeing from sin (1 Corinthians 10:13) and changing, we become scared and immobile at the lion’s roaring (the lies of the Devil).

We are part of God’s kingdom because we are His children.  We must tell the Devil, “You have no power over me!”  Taking up the shield of faith to quench the fiery darts is as simple as saying, “get away from me Satan,” with the authority of Christ within you.  (Matthew 16:23, Mark 8:33, Luke 4:8)

I close with this, don’t try to be what other people want you to be or expect you to be.  Instead, be what God wants you to be, and everything else will fall into place.  Let the trials remind you to place your faith in God and not of the things of this world.  Let them build your virtue (patience, peace, unconditional love for others, etc).  Remember, no matter what happens in this life, God is in control and He loves you unconditionally with a love that surpasses our understanding.  It’s a Father’s love for His child…times infinity and forever; a love so strong that Christ died to protect us.  “And here is how to measure it–the greatest love is shown when people lay down their lives for their friends.” (John 15:13)