Our happiness and success should never be dependent on the world’s ability to fix our problems and make things easy so we can coast through life with little opposition. We were born for opposition. We were born to be more than conquerors.
We have the victory through our Lord, Jesus Christ. We were born to live in this day and time in history, and we should not resent the world for the problems it creates. Neither should we be afraid of the future nor run away from what we were put on Earth to do.
You and I have the same spirit of faith as those who have gone before us. The apostle Paul faced great challenges—more than any of us will probably ever face. He certainly didn’t coast through life with no opposition. Notice what he said:
“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed.” —2 Corinthians 4:7-9
He admits that he is hard-pressed or feeling a lot of pressure. The Amplified Bible says, “pressed on every side [troubled and oppressed in every way], but not cramped or crushed,” (AMPC). The Passion Translation says it this way, “Though we experience every kind of pressure, we’re not crushed. At times we don’t know what to do, but quitting is not an option,” (TPT).
We are facing a lot of pressure today.
The stresses of modern life are hard to ignore. We all sense them. We all feel them from time to time. However, our happiness must not be dependent on the hope that one day things will go back to normal—whatever normal is or was. We can leave that thinking behind and join the ranks of men and women of faith. We may be hard-pressed, but we are not crushed!
Paul also said he was perplexed. Perplexed here simply means he was baffled or didn’t have all the answers, but he was not in despair. He couldn’t explain why everything that was happening around him was happening, and that may be true in your life.
Many times, things happen in the world or in our lives that we can’t explain. I may be baffled; I may not have the answer to every question, but I am not in despair. I’m not going to be sad and depressed. I’m not going to act as if all is lost because I don’t understand why this or that happened. What we do know is greater and more powerful than what we don’t know.
Part of walking by faith is allowing faith to fill in the blanks.
Instead of becoming disheartened by what we don’t know and can’t explain, we can focus on what we believe and know to be true. I know this: God is a good God. I know that God’s word is true. I know that His promises are eternal, and they never fail. I do know God is on the throne and Jesus is Lord. I do know God is greater than the enemy and I have the victory through my Lord, Jesus Christ. We have the answers to the most important questions, and for all the others, we can rest in faith and rejoice in God!
Paul said, “We are hard-pressed on every side, yet we are not crushed. We’re perplexed but not in despair. We’re persecuted, but we’re not forsaken. We are struck down but not destroyed.”
Can you say that with Paul? Our success in life is attainable no matter what the world throws at us.“Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us,” (Rom. 8:37).
Victory is not just assured to those who have little opposition. It’s just the opposite; success is ours because of God’s word and because His exceedingly great power in, through and for us is greater than any challenge we have to face. John tells us that faith is the victory that overcomes the world (1 Jn. 5:4). Victory is ours and it’s released by faith.
It’s not our fault we were born at this time in history. We didn’t ask to be born now. God put us here, and we have been chosen to run our course in this generation. We belong here in this world at this time.
Don’t ever feel cheap and insignificant.
We are not an imposition on the ecosystem or a burden on the planet. God prepared the Earth as a place for us to live this life, and He has provided air to breathe, water to drink, food to eat and fuel to burn. Along with all these natural things, He’s provided forgiveness, authority, prosperity and victory so we can live overcoming lives. As we run our race, we must refuse to back down from the challenges we face. Some of our modern-day challenges may be unique to our times, but they are ours to conquer.
Refuse to be intimidated or discouraged no matter what you are facing.
Faith people don’t run away from challenges today any more than David ran away from Goliath. Goliath was the best thing that ever happened to David! The army of Israel was terrified. They were paralyzed with fear because of Goliath, and they probably thought: We could be happy if it weren’t for this giant.
But David saw it differently. When David walked into that situation, he decided: I am not going to back down. He’s cursing the armies of God. He’s cursing the God I represent, and I’m not going to allow this to go on.
In other words, Israel’s greatest nightmare was David’s greatest opportunity.
If David had run from Goliath, we might have never heard of him. And it’s the same with Moses and Pharaoh. If Moses had run from Pharaoh, if Moses had backed down, we wouldn’t have had the great miracles of God we continue to celebrate today—the plagues, the parting of the Red Sea, the water that came out of the rock and the manna that came from heaven. All these miracles came about because Moses stood up to Pharaoh and followed the plan of God. Moses didn’t shrink back and run away.
Moses was ready to believe God in a very challenging situation, and we need to be ready to do the same!
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