Would you be drawn to Christ regardless the path God would have you to travel; or would you only be drawn to Him by a road of your own choosing?
Earlier this week, our readers were pointed to the persecuted church and only a few of the many horrors that they find themselves forced to endure for the sake of Jesus. While it is extremely possible that we will one day find ourselves in similar situations of persecution, we must also realize that our loving Heavenly Father allows us to go through various other forms of affliction so that we would be drawn closer to Him, by pressing further into Jesus, seeking comfort during those times.
Some of these afflictions could include, but certainly not be limited to, sickness, the slow death of ourselves or a loved one, physical or mental limitations quickly coming upon us, loss of income or friends, or even being misunderstood. As I said, this list could go on and on.
Regardless your personal brand of affliction, let us point you to the admonition and warning of puritan John Flavel, from his work “Keeping the Heart”: “…afflictions is a pill, which, being wrapt up in patience and quiet submission, may be easily swallowed; but discontent chews the pill, and so embitters the soul. God throws away some comfort which he saw would hurt you, and you will throw away your peace after it: he shoots an arrow which sticks in your clothes, and was never intended to hurt, but only to fright you from sin; and you will thrust it onward to the piercing of your very hearts, by despondency and discontent.”
Are we willing to trust God completely and recognize that He, in His sovereignty, directs our paths for our best, even if we cannot see it at the time? Will we choose to trust in His love and goodness during the hardships which come our way?
There are political and cultural undercurrents which would threaten to pull us under if our hope wasn’t in the Lord. The Lord will sometimes bring affliction into our lives so that we will be brought to evaluate our choices and positions. Affliction should move our minds to check our beliefs and see that we fully align ourselves to Scripture in all that we do.
This in no way indicates that hardships only come upon us because of sin; the first chapter of Job should remove any doubt of that. But God in His kindness may use affliction to whisper, “Look to Me;” when His shouts of obvious blessing fall upon deaf ears.
Bill Johnson has often shared with us, during our morning devotion time, what a blessing it has been to see elderly friends being faithful in their devotions, and in their devotion to Jesus, during immense physical suffering or even during the times of having lost a close spouse. These are examples meant for our edification.
Be careful not to focus on self during times of affliction; it’s God’s desire that we always focus on Him. And although our need for a close and intimate relationship with Christ is vital, it’s most important to draw near the Throne of Grace in times of trouble, because in our humanness we most often become self-centered.
Remember one another in prayer and please remember American Decency Association in your prayers as well. Each of us, and each ministry which fights the fight, has our own brand of affliction from time to time. May God keep all of us faithful to He who is the Faithful and True Witness.
JOIN US for our MOST IMPORTANT EVENT YET!
What Future Will Michigan Choose? Michigan will vote its future on August 7th, are you informed on the #1 voting issue? Are you aware that Michigan and Minnesota are the two key states for gubernatorial elections this year? I wonder how many people in Michigan are asleep at the wheel. Will they allow the “Great Lakes State” to go careening off the road, crashing into the water and sinking into a watery grave of no return? Or will we (all of us), warn and stir our families, churches, and friends to recognize the vital significance of these times, shaking the cobwebs from our thoughts, allowing the truth to blow the fog from our vision, and see the landscape for what it is as it lies before us? Are you willing to sound the alarm with us? If not, this state—and nation—may never recover. We may continue to lose freedoms, making it all the more difficult to stand for what is right and true and decent. Some may think this an overstatement—it is not!
American Decency Association is bringing National Security Experts Frank Gaffney and Philip Haney to Fremont on Friday, June 15, from 1 PM to 5:00 PMat our headquarters (203 E. Main St.) and to Bloomfield Hills, MI on Saturday, June 16, from 2 PM to 6 PM at Bloomfield Hills Baptist Church (3600 Telegraph Rd., Bloomfield Hills, MI. 48302)
These two warriors of the truth will be joined by two more; these are two women you may never have heard of, but you need to hear their story. Anni Cyrus and Farrah Prudence will be sharing their stories. It’s their personal first-hand account of Shariah life for women and how they escaped it. In America, Islam is portrayed as a religion of peace and something to be desired by women. Come, listen to their experiences, and share the truth with others.
Don’t miss out! Register TODAY! Click here to register for Fremont. Click here to register for Bloomfield Hills.
To support our efforts please click here or mail your gift to American Decency Association (ADA), PO Box 202, Fremont, MI 49412.
American Decency Association is a member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability.