IN THE DAYS OF HIS POWER SERIES.
TOPIC: TOUGH TIME NEVER LASTS BUT GOD’S PEOPLE DO!
Rev. Innocent Chukwudi Peace-Udochukwu
President Living Fountain Ministries Int’l LIFOM
“The LORD is good, a strong refuge when trouble comes. He is close to those who trust in Him.”
Tough times are a part of life, but they don’t last forever.
When we go through hard times, it can feel like trouble is all we have known our entire lives.
It may even feel like it will never end.
‘Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honour Me”
- Every hardship, every trial, every battle, has its own expiry date.
In times of hardship, it’s important to remember that we are stronger than we think.
It’s in tough times that we discover God’s power, our true strength and resilience.
No matter what life throws our way, we can always get through it if we persevere and stay strong.
Tough people don’t give up, they find a way to overcome and thrive.
TOUGH TIMES ARE PART OF LIFE
Just as the good, happy, and joyous times of life are part of life, so are the difficult, hard, and dark times.
The life of Jesus is an example of this. He had a remarkable season of ministry, and many people were healed and restored. BUT the true value of His coming to earth is found in the difficult and hard times He faced, the false accusations, the cruel punishment, and the death that He endured, give us the hope and faith we have.
The truth of that matter is that no one is exempt from troubles and challenges during the course of life.
Although when we are facing hard times, it may appear as if everyone else is doing just fine, this is not the case.
- The Bible speaks about ‘when trouble comes’ not ‘if trouble comes’.
Sometimes we can mistakenly attribute the hardship we are facing to something we may have done wrong.
Although wrong-doing has its own consequences, seasons of difficulty are not necessarily the result.
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance”
“It might be tough, but my dad used to say, tough times don’t last—tough people do.”
Those words were spoken by James Robertson, 56, of Detroit as he talked about his daily commute to work. Robertson’s daily commute is probably much different from mine or yours. I know my commute to work only takes five minutes of a nice warm car ride in the winter and a nice cool car ride in the summer. Not so with James! His car broke down in 2005, and because he couldn’t afford another or the insurance, he decided to walk. His daily commute became a 21-mile round trip walk to work every day!
He’s able to ride the bus for several miles, but the bus doesn’t go all the way to his job, so he has to walk about eight miles in the morning and 13 miles at night after work. You would think that if anyone had an excuse to call off work he would. But James’ boss said that he’s had perfect attendance for 12 years now, despite the long, difficult commute! He doesn’t complain. On the contrary, at lunch time he bows his head to thank God for his food.
I want to share two simple lessons we can learn from this amazing story.
Even though his car broke down in 2005, James never quit! Instead he took the tougher but more rewarding route of overcoming hardship. He took the bus and walked the rest of the way even in bad weather. In doing so he earned the respect of others. Other people can be inspired by our examples if you and I handle difficulties with great courage and perseverance. I grew up hearing the old adage “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” We all at times may find ourselves in tough, difficult situations. Sometimes we’ll experience setbacks. It’s hard not to get discouraged and just quit! In Philippians 4:13 Paul wrote about how he overcame these difficulties:
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
We too can do all things with God’s help!
One college student took notice of James’ situation and decided to do something to help him by setting up a donation fund. This inspired others to help, with some people even offering their cars.
Don’t quit!. Overcome your difficulties by crying out to God for help. And don’t forget to reach out and help others in turn! God’s way is wonderful and always works. Remember, “Tough times don’t last—GOD’S people do.”
When times are tough, you can’t depend upon the news or your social media feed. You must hold on to God’s Word no matter what. Why? Hebrews 6:18 tells us: “These two things cannot change: God cannot lie when he makes a promise, and he cannot lie when he makes an oath.”
These things encourage us who came to God for safety. They give us strength to hold on to the hope we have been given”
You can depend upon God’s Word in difficult times because it’s always true. You never have to wonder whether you will find safety in the Bible.
“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it”
(1 Corinthians 10:13).
Life is not predictable. There are ups and downs along the way. Many of us want to trust God. When times are good, it can feel easier. But when times feel difficult, it is even more important to trust God. God’s unchanging character can give us a firm foundation when things feel unsteady and uncertain.
Life can be going along smoothly for a season. Your job is satisfying. Your friends and family are enjoyable. Your goals, finances, health and outlook seem bright. Then, all of a sudden, life throws a curveball. Someone you know gets sick. You lose your job. A friend or family member betrays you.
The things you felt secure in all of a sudden feel shaky and uncertain.
How do you trust that God is good in these circumstances? How do you trust Him when you do not understand what is happening? When you cannot see a resolution?
To trust is to believe in the reliability, truth, ability or strength of something. So, when it comes to trusting God, that means believing in His reliability, His Word, His ability and His strength. The Bible says that God cannot lie. That He always keeps His promises. That He loves you and has good in store for you. Trusting in Him means believing what He says about Himself, about the world and about you is true.
“And when neither sun nor stars in many days appeared, and no small tempest lay on us, all hope that we should be saved was then taken away.
But after long abstinence Paul stood forth in the midst of them, and said, Sirs, ye should have hearkened unto me, and not have loosed from Crete, and to have gained this harm and loss.
And now I exhort you to be of good cheer: for there shall be no loss of any man’s life among you, but of the ship.
For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve,
Saying, Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar: and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee.
Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me.”
THE presence of a brave man in the hour of danger is a very great comfort to his companions. It is a grand thing to observe Paul so bold, so calm, in the midst of all the hurly-burly of the storm, and talking so cheerfully, and so encouragingly, to the crew and to the soldiery and to the prisoners. You must have seen in many events in history that it is the one man, after all, that wins the battle: all the rest play their parts well when the one heroic spirit lifts the standard. Every now and then we hear some simpleton or other talking against a “one-man ministry,” when it has been a one-man ministry from the commencement of the world to the present day; and whenever you try to have any other form of ministry, except that of each individual saint discharging his own ministry, and doing it thoroughly and heartily and independently and bravely in the sight of God, you very soon run upon quicksands. Recollect, Christian man, that wherever you are placed you are to be the one man, and you are to have courage and independence of spirit and strength of mind received from God, that with it you may comfort those around you who are of the weaker sort. So act that your confidence in God shall strengthen the weak hands and confirm the feeble knees, and your calm quiet look shall say to them that are of a faint heart, “Be strong; fear not.”
To prepare for difficult days, memorize this verse: “You, Lord, give perfect peace to those who keep their purpose firm and put their trust in you”
(Isaiah 26:3 ).
Whenever you’re confused or in doubt about anything in your life, always return to the five purposes found in the Great Commandment and the Great Commission: to know and love God, to belong to his family, to grow in Christ, to serve Christ, and to share Christ. That’s the elemental chart of the Christian life. When you’re in doubt and confused, always return to God’s purposes.
“Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.”
(1 Peter 5:7
In times of doubt, remember His promises. Remember who He has always been. Even in doubt and uncertainty, if you keep going to Him, He will continually show Himself to be trustworthy.
If you must have forgotten everything I have been trying to let you know concerning surviving tough times just remember that regardless of your mistakes or the difficulty that comes your way, God has a purpose for you.
No matter what happens, God is in control and He will continue to draw you back to the plan for your life.
SHALOM AND REMAIN HIGHLY BLESSED FOREVER!
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