Where is God in a crisis? When everything seems to be falling apart and we’re anxiously trying to put it all back together again, He often seems so very far away. Perhaps we’ve just received bad news. Something happened without warning. It’s too late to do anything about it. “Help, Lord where are You?” Doesn’t He promise to be with us always? (Matthew 28:20).
Through the hard times He’s right there in the middle of it all, standing with us. We don’t see Him because we’re too busy trying to cope with the situation ourselves. It’s difficult to stay calm in a storm. Jesus rebuked His disciples: ‘You of little faith, why are you so afraid?’ (Matthew 8:26). They let their circumstances overwhelm them. They thought they were going to drown. We too need to rise above the perceived danger and look beyond our own safety. ‘Looking to Jesus, the author of our faith’ (Hebrews 12:2). Faith is being sure of what we can’t see (Hebrews 11:1). It’s putting our trust in the One we know. In Biblical terms, to know someone is to have a very close relationship with them; to be intimate. We need to know Him, personally (John 17:3).
With God, it’s never too late. Jesus didn’t rush to Lazarus’ bedside. He knew Lazarus would live (John 11:6). Everything has its time and God is the timekeeper. He is also the comforter. ‘Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest’ (Matthew 11:28). It’s not a ‘mind’ thing, it’s a spiritual reality. The Spirit of God can permeate every part of our being, and we can know His peace, even in difficult circumstances. ‘Somebody told me of the joy they had … that in sorrow they could be glad … but I didn’t think it could be, till it happened to me’ (Song by Andrae Crouch).
Sometimes it’s painful. Did He not take our pain with Him to the Cross? Did He not suffer for us so that we might know eternal joy in His presence? (Isaiah 53). He endured pain and affliction for us and died, so that we might live. ‘For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal’ (2 Corinthians 4:17,18).
Do we see Jesus as some historical figure who somehow claimed victory over death so that we might go to Heaven? Or do we know Him? Can we share our life with Him, so that He can share His life with us? Then we will rest in His love, because that’s where our strength is. ‘The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged’ (Deuteronomy 13: 8).
Prayer: Father, forgive me when I’ve looked to myself and my feelings rather than to You, and when I’ve doubted Your love for me and tried to justify myself. Lord, I want to surrender all to You and trust You always. Please take me into this intimate place where I can know You, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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