There will be times in our walk where everything seems to be going well. Our ministry (personal or professional) is humming along smoothly and we are content and satisfied with our growth. Another word for content and satisfied would be comfortable. The problem is that I believe comfortable Christianity is an oxymoron. As soon as we get comfortable in our faith, that’s the time we will find ourselves tested. Our greatest tribulations often come on the heels of our greatest triumphs. Just when it looks like we have everything figured out, all the rules suddenly change and we find ourselves with more questions than answers, flailing in our faith, and desperately crying out to God.
The good news is that the God of the best times is also the God of the worst. He has shown Himself faithful throughout all of history. When Joseph was sold into slavery, wrongly accused, and thrown into prison, he could have easily quit on God. He could have stopped believing. But we all know how the story ends. God used the experiences of the tough times to bring Joseph through to something even greater on the other side. I love what Joseph said to his brothers when they were fearful he would kill them since they had sold him into slavery. He said, “What you intended for evil, God used it for good!” (Genesis 50:20). That’s an encouraging verse to me. I know that no matter how bad things are, God can use what I’m going through and turn it into something good.
Jesus was at the height of His ministry and popularity when Judas decided to betray Him. One day He’s being celebrated as He enters the city, and just a couple days later He’s being led back out of that same city carrying a cross and having been beaten to a bloody pulp. Instead of worship and praise, now there are only jeers and curses coming out of the mouths of the people along the way. He was doing everything right and God was getting all the glory. Then suddenly, it all came crashing down. But what men intended for evil, God used for good. If not for the death of Christ, there would be no hope and salvation for the rest of us. It doesn’t matter how hard you crash, God can take the pieces and assemble them into something good, something beyond your wildest imagination.
If you’ve recently hit a crash point that came in out of the blue and knocked you off your feet, remember that God will use it for His glory if you let Him. Instead of getting angry or feeling sorry for yourself, see what new pastures are just over the hill. Perhaps your dream was too small so God had to blow it up in order for you to dream bigger. Maybe He has a need for your gifts in a different context that you would never have considered as long as you were comfortable where you were. Don’t let the schemes of men get you down. Our God is greater. He is able to rescue you from the crash and deliver you into something greater.