Life can be a struggle sometimes. It can be hard to see where you are meant to go, what path you should be taking. Worry, doubt and fear can kick in. You may fail to see the point of where you are in life. You might be wondering how what you are going through will ever change.
But God has a plan for each of us – “plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29v11). It may not appear obvious to you, but God has a plan. And He will provide. “God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them” Romans 8v28.
He will give us everything we need. Not necessarily everything we want, but everything we need for our ultimate purpose of making disciples of all nations. As well as promising to provide us with a future, and equipping us with the gifts we need for that (re 1st Corinthians 12), God also provides protection for us through times of trouble (both physical and spiritual).
Psalm 23 says: “Even when I walk
through the dark valley of death,
I will not be afraid,
for you are close beside me.
Your rod and your staff
protect and comfort me.” (v4)
And in Isaiah 41v10 God promises “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.”
God doesn’t say he will remove all trouble from our lives (in fact, Jesus says we will have to suffer for His sake.) However He promises to be with us in our times of trouble, comforting us, reassuring us, helping us ride out the storms of this life.
If we trust in God through our troubles, be they illness, doubt, loss, addiction, attack, abuse, parental divorce, financial problems, whatever it may be, we can have hope that there will come a day when every tear is wiped away. And until that day God won’t abandon us – he is holding us with his victorious right hand.
Sometimes it can be hard to see that God is providing for us, but it could well be that rather than providing what we want, He is providing what we need, and the difference between what we want and what we actually need is such that we are so focused on what He isn’t providing (and usually there is a good reason for Him not to – it could harm us, our motives for wanting ‘it’ could be wrong etc) that we miss what He is providing. Here’s a simple test.
Did you eat today? Who created the animals and plants?
Are you wearing clothes? Who created the raw materials for the fabrics?
Are you breathing? Who created the air and provided the oxygen you need?
Is God providing?
In Matthew 6v33 Jesus reminds us “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” God will provide what we need. Not what we want, but what we need. Today, strive to cast aside the desires of your sinful nature, and appreciate all that God has provided already. And if you are going through trouble, take reassurance that God is with you, and He has us in his hands.