FOOD FOR THE SPIRIT
by Rev. Dr. Janet Marston-McGregor
May 5, 2011
WHEN YOUR FAITH IS TESTED
Have you ever had your faith tested? Have you ever been in a very traumatic situation in your life that was so devastating and so horrible that you actually wanted to give up on living? Have you ever wondered 'why' God would allow horrible things to happen in your life?
Let me assure you that almost everyone has been through that type of trauma. I, myself, have also been through very traumatic life-changing events, including one recently that took over a year to be over. There were moments when I wanted to give up on life. No, I would not kill myself, but I definitely begged God to take me. I could not imagine going through life having to deal with the situation I was in for the rest of my life. I felt like a complete failure, devastated and depressed.
So, what got me through it? Well, let me tell you. First, I am very glad that God did not take me like I asked. Sometimes His answer is 'no' and now I am very glad He didn't give me what I wanted. So, be careful what you ask for - it isn't always the best thing for you.
What saved me from this devastating trauma was putting my complete faith and trust in God and ONLY God. My faith in God was never an issue. It was my trust in people, in the things of this world that knocked me down. When I had those horrible feelings of devastation and hopelessness, I immediately prayed to God to help me, guide me, and show me a sign that things would get better.
Once I prayed, I left it to God and trusted that something good would come out of it. I had to have 'faith' that no matter what the outcome, whether it be good or bad, I had to know without a doubt that God would protect me and get me through it. And, HE did. And now that my situation has ended, I feel vindicted. My GOD delivered me from the evil that pursued me. My GOD prevailed!
We are simple humans and are made of flesh. We will be tested and there are times when we fail. We will have moments of doubt and confusion, devastation, and sometimes depression, feelings of hopelessness. We are not promised that we will not have these moments. We ARE promised that when we put our complete trust in God, that we will get through them. We will get through them because God is bigger than anything in this world. God is more powerful, more faithful, more trustworthy and loyal than any person or any thing that we count on in this temporary life on earth.
When we truly put all of our faith and trust in God, we will not fail - we will prevail. It may take awhile - and no one can guess how long - we just have to keep on believing and trusting. Look at JOB in the Bible - it took years for JOB to be delivered. We have to trust in the outcome, even when it is not what we wanted or expected. And, we have to believe that sometimes God's purpose is more than anything we could understand, and to leave it at that.
In my situation, I prayed (crying out to God) "LORD, no matter what the outcome, even if it is not what I want, I will accept it, I will give YOU the glory, and I will be thankful and trust that YOU will help me." The moment I prayed that prayer, I felt like a big weight was lifted off of my body. I knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that God heard me, answered me, and I knew that God was with me.
So, how can a minister be depressed and devastated? Well, I am just a humble servant - a human being that has life experiences just like everyone else. And, when bad things happen, my faith is tested just like everyone else. However, it is my hope, as a minister and teacher for the LORD, that I can use these experiences to minister to others and help them through their situations. God will always be there to help you. Nobody deserves it. Nobody earns it. It is the gift of God through mercy and love and grace, freely given, ready for the asking. Don't hesitate to ask God for help. That's what HE wants. That's what he loves to do. HE is your Heavenly Father and He wants to help you now.
GOD IS GOOD - GOD IS GREAT - TRUST IN HIM - IT'S NEVER TOO LATE!
(Yes, I made that up.)
MY PRECIOUS LORD AND SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST - WHEN I AM LOST AND HURTING, WHEN I SOMETIMES FEEL THERE IS NO HOPE - HELP ME TO ALWAYS PUT MY TRUST AND FAITH IN YOU - AND I WILL ALWAYS COME OUT A WINNER - FOR YOU NEVER FAIL - YOU ARE ALWAYS FAITHFUL AND LOYAL - YOU ARE ALWAYS TRUSTWORTHY - EVEN WHEN THE OUTCOME IS NOT WHAT I WANT - I HUMBLY ACCEPT YOUR ANSWER - I SURRENDER MY WILL TO YOURS - I KNOW THAT YOU ARE WITH ME - YOU SAVED ME FROM SIN AND DEATH - AND I AM MOST THANKFUL THAT I SHALL LIVE WITH YOU FOREVER IN HEAVEN - AMEN!
(9) Know therefore that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations;
(5) Thy mercy, O LORD, is in the heavens; and thy faithfulness reacheth unto the clouds.
(1) Hear my prayer, O LORD, give ear to my supplications: in thy faithfulness answer me, and in thy righteousness.
(30) Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?
(16) For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
(17) For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.