Philippians 4:12) I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. (NIV)
The year 2020 will be etched in stone for every person in the world. None of us have experienced a COVID-19 pandemic. For the Christians of this world, we understand that it is only by the grace of God that we can overcome our fears – our test of faith held attitudes.
The Bible talks about issues unknown to humankind emerging beyond the mind of world leaders and medical leaders. There are no easy explanations when a COVID-19 pandemic circles the globe. For the Christian Folks, there is an uneasy movement – transformation – sensing a stirring in our heart to place our faith in God. Only the grace of God can keep us from having no hope and only the grace of God can keep us from a hopeless attitude of our world.
When I lose the desire to be involved, when I do not care what happens, when my spiritual walk and talk are going nowhere, then I might just say that is restlessness. Fretfulness to me means having a self-righteous attitude. “I just do not give a pinch, why should I…who cares?” However, may I suggest what experience has taught me is that what we are shrugging off with a ‘do not care’ attitude is the loneliness inside our hearts. Levelheadedness, on the other hand, means that we can be at peace with God and other folks in every situation, whether good or bad.
For those of us who have lived awhile, we have become painfully aware that somehow material things just do not compare to the enjoyment we get when we are with family, friends, and co-workers. A positive relationship with Jesus Christ, with family, friends, and co-workers far exceeds anything that we own. When we take our journey with Christ seriously, we then have found the secret that the apostle Paul is talking about, the secret of contentment, that inner happiness, that inner peace that money just cannot buy.
Perhaps you are like me, even as a Christian, circumstances at times have a way of getting under my skin. When things are going okay, when everything seems to be humming along simply fine and the sun is shining, I am up on cloud nine. However, when everything seems to be going nowhere, this contentment stuff seems like a mountain to overcome. It can be tough to find the peace in our hearts we so eagerly desire.
Scripture does not teach that everything that happens to Christians will be good. However, Scripture does teach that God is at work, in every situation whether we perceive it as good or bad. Now the challenge to us is to strive to understand what God is trying to reveal to us in the circumstance. Right here we can choose to go our way and lose the battle, or we can choose to trust God. The choice is ours.
God uses those times of difficulty in our lives to do some of his greatest work in us. It is true. We learn some of the most important lessons in life in our struggles, in our difficult times. God builds into our character and compassion through the struggles He allows us to experience, struggles that are at times tough to understand.
I know that has been true for me and it has probably been true for you. We need to look at the struggles in our lives and ask what God is teaching us through them. We might find lessons so valuable in those struggles that, given the opportunity, we would not change the hard times even if we could – To God Be the Glory Great things He has done.
Would you pray this prayer with me…? “Lord Jesus, come into my heart. Forgive my sins. I want my life to change. My thoughts and my attitude need to change. I do not have peace in my heart. I really want that peace, joy, and happiness that I long for. Please let the Holy Spirit help me be the kind of Christian that will bring honour to Your Name.” Amen