After spending a few weeks on looking at what it means to be strong and to stand firm, I would encourage you to go to Biblegateway.com and do a search on the words "stand firm." You will be encouraged at how many times those words are spoken to us and in so many different contexts. God wants us to stand firm in His love and truth and in any circumstance we may find ourselves in. When we find ourselves stuck in the impossible, that is right where we get to witness the amazing movement of God's hand. Stand firm knowing that your Father in Heaven wants you to grow and know His love and He wants to bless you. Please look up Ephesians 6:10-18.
God has given us the tools to be victorious! Today, I want to look at one last situation that can be most difficult to stand firm - when God doesn't do what we think He should do. I was reminded of this last night as I was viewing a video by Beth Moore. Please look up Luke 7:18-23. We all have difficult times when things are not making sense and we just cannot understand why God is allowing it to happen to us. Life is made up of great times and very difficult and heart-wrenching times, and it is the heart-wrenching times that can test our faith. In this section of scripture, John the Baptist was in Herod's prison and he was wondering about all that he was hearing about Jesus and probably wondering why he wasn't set free. The thing that struck me last night was the fact that John was Jesus' cousin and his birth was also a miraculous birth. Knowing that his parents were people who loved God, John probably grew up hearing the stories of his conception and birth and Jesus' conception and birth. Remember that John also baptized Jesus and witnessed God's visible outpouring of the Spirit on Jesus and heard God's audible voice declaring Jesus His son.
Yet, Jesus was not setting him free, a captive in Herod's prison. It didn't make sense because Isaiah prophesied that the Messiah would set the captives free (Isaiah 61). John found himself in a place where he was questioning who Jesus was because of his personal circumstances. Be encouraged! John had personal experience and evidence that Jesus was the Messiah, the Son of God; yet he faced a moment where things were not making sense. I cannot make sense of parts of my childhood, yet God has turned it around and turned those ashes into beauty. God doesn't not promise a pain free life; however, He does promise to do a good work through us in those difficult situations (Romans 8:28). Jesus replies in Luke 7:23, "And tell him, 'God blesses those who do not turn away because of me.'" Stand firm in your faith! Don't believe the lies of Satan that tell you God doesn't care about you or that God is unjust; God wants to do a good work in you.
Believe that no matter the circumstance you are in that God can work it into good for Him.