Greetings to the joyous people of East Zorra!
Yes, the Lord has done amazing things for us! What joy! Psalm 126:3
‘Many are the afflictions of the righteous, . . . but the Lord delivers out of them all!’ Psalm 34:19
Jesus said: ‘In this world, you will have trouble, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.’ John 16:33
If you don’t believe Jesus – how about Maya Angelou? She said: ‘Every storm runs out of rain’!
Some Christians are sadly prone to look on the dark side of everything and to dwell more upon what they have gone through rather than what God has done for them. Ask for their impression of the Christian life, and they will describe their continual conflicts, deep afflictions, sad adversities, or the sinfulness of their hearts, with scarcely any allusion to God’s mercy and help.
It is possible to look at things differently and say, with the psalmist David: ‘I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along. He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see what He has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the Lord.’
It is true that we endure trials, which James says can be grievous. It is just as true that we are delivered out of them. It is true that we have our shortcomings, but it is quite as true that we have an all-sufficient Saviour, who helps us overcome. In looking back, it would be wrong to deny that we have been in the Slough of Despond, or have crept along the Valley of Humiliation, as talked of by John Bunyan in “Pilgrims Progress”, but it would be wrong to forget that we have been through them safely and profitably; we have not remained in them, thanks to our Almighty Helper and Leader. ‘We went through fire and flood, but you brought us to a place of great abundance.’ Psalms 66:12
The deeper our troubles, the louder our thanks to God, who has led us through all, and preserved us, until now. Our griefs should not mar the melody of our praise, which we reckon to be the bass part of our life’s song, “He hath done great things for us, whereof we are glad.”