It’s easy to praise God when things are going well. When your plans work out as expected it is easy to smile. But how do you smile when all your friends are getting married and you are approaching 35 and still a single lady living with your parents. How do you praise God when you have a health challenge that has refused to go? How can you relax when you have no money for food, your kids are about to be sent out of school for lack of school fees, your job is as good as not having a job and the landlord is knocking on your door for the rent.
Life is full of ups and downs, sometimes more downs than ups. I have learnt from experience (not necessarily mine) that God doesn’t allow challenges you can’t handle to come your way. So if you are facing a challenge it is because God Almighty knows that you have what it takes to overcome. I remind myself about the verse of the Holy bible (Ps 30:5) that says, “Weeping may endure for the night but joy comes in the morning”. It may not look like it now but if you do not quit, and do not cheat, and do not run home when trouble arrives, you will tell your story and it would help someone to be strong.
My admonition is simple, what you do in times of trials is not as important as who you become. Who you become would influence what you do, what you do would influence the results you get. I am talking here about CHARACTER.
When going through trials, WHO you are is what makes you see a mountain as a mole-hill. The person you have BEcome is what makes you see a “huge problem” as “one-of-those-thing”. The first step in getting out of trials is contained in Roman 12:2 – Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind. The solution to every challenge begin in your mind. You need to change what you see IN YOUR MIND by changing WHO you are.
The big question is, who should you BECOME in times of trials?
- Be close to God – You need revelation and by being close to God, he will reveal his purpose for your life. Haven’t you noticed that most of the people that make it begin in life are close to information? They know when a grant is being given, they know when government policies is about to change, they know the next big opportunity simply because they have position themselves to get such information.
What could be better than positioning yourself in the presence of the Almighty God. The one who knows and sees everything. God knows the end from the beginning. One way to tap into this knowledge is to be close to God, to listen to Him, to ask him. God knows you can handle the storm of life, sometimes I think God sends storms your way so that you can “show yourself”.
God want you to be close to him by studying the bible and spending some quite time with him. He want to reveal His mind and intention to us. The sooner you draw near to God and understand the purpose of the challenges, the faster you get out.
- Be Strong – And David encouraged himself in the Lord. You need to be strong. Strength is not a function of your physical appearance. David was not the heftiest man in the land but “his head was there”. His was so strong in his mind that he saw Goliath’s defeat before he even started the fight.
The first thing trials do to a person is that they drain your energy and make you feel powerless. All this happens in the mind. Being strong comes from within, it is as a result of the knowledge that you have. You need to realise that the God you serve is not unjust to forget you. He said he will give his angels charge over you. You need to remind yourself that God loves you so much and He wants you to prosper and be in good health.
Once again, the way to be strong is to eat the word of God. Know what the word is saying about you and your situation. By coming close to God he will reveal himself to you. But studying the word of God you would be feeding you mind. Do this consistently and you will be strong.
- Trust God completely – The grass looks greener on the other side. I had that saying so many times as a child but I never really understood it until I got much older. It is easy to look else where for help, thinking that the Yahoo Boy down the road or the Runs girl in the other flat are having it a better life that you. It’s possible to try to help yourself by falling out of God’s plan for your life. The temptation is strong, especially in this age when the turn of a pen can make you a millionaire, and one government appointment can make you a mega millionaire. It seems okay to help yourself by reaching out to spiritualists a.k.a Babalawo but in the end all is vanity.
They that put their trust in the Lord shall stand firm even in the storm. It might be rocky but if you choose to draw near to God by listening to his voice and studying his word, be strong by reminding yourself of the promises of God and by trusting God completely. In the end things will get better and your story will be epic.
Everything comes to an end, and in due season, you will smile at all that you have been through.