When Tom Hanks used a catapulting rock to extract a bad tooth in an excruciating scene from the movie The Castaway, I cringed. Alone on a desert island, he was forced to take painful action. He had no other choice.
Sometimes I'm tempted to feel the same way. There are days when the enemy tells me I have no choice and no hope, and that I must extract myself from certain painful situations if I want the hurting to stop.
But the enemy is a liar.
If we think we will never endure seasons of suffering, we're wrong. Jesus said, "In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration;" How's that for a reality check? But then He speaks powerfully encouraging words: "...But be of good cheer, take courage, be confident, certain, undaunted, for I have overcome the world. I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you." (John 16:33, Amplified Bible)
I believe that the toughest thing Jesus accomplished on this earth was resisting the urge to rescue Himself from the cross. He could easily have commanded a legion of angels or called down fire from heaven. Or just walked away.
But He didn't.
He chose to stay. He chose to accomplish God's will instead of His own.
We face the same temptation. We will always have to resist the desire to rescue ourselves from our situations. Ironically, the option to extract ourselves will always be there, because God loves us enough to give us the gift of free will. He gives us a choice.
We can't allow our desires or the enemy to force us into prematurely rescuing ourselves. God has a plan. His timing is perfect. And He is faithful.
If we're willing to yield to God's will instead of our own, He will grant us grace, and ultimately, triumph. How do we accomplish this?
- By talking to the Lord about our feelings, just like King David did. He can handle it.
- By sharing our hearts with a trusted friend, and listening to godly advice.
- By reading the Word of God (our Bibles) and believing what it says.
- By praying, praying, praying.
God, help us, help me--believe that You can redeem our situations and accomplish Your plan and purpose, regardless of how we feel. Help us not to rescue ourselves, but run to You and trust You instead. In Jesus' name, Amen.
Photo taken outside my front door, by me. I'm tired of paying for photos at i-stock, so I'll be using my collection of sky/sunset/cloud photos more often. On this particular shot, my lens fogged up the moment I stepped into the muggy front yard, giving the picture an ethereal quality I like.