This blog focuses on the quest to know and please God in a constantly increasing way. The upward journey never ends. My prayer is that this blog will reflect a heart that seeks God and that it will encourage others who share the same heart desire.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

God Alone

Even in ordinary life, Christians desire the help and support of other Christians. This is increasingly true during times of particular struggle. The vast range of troubling challenges could involve family, marriage, relationships, employment, ministry, health, mistreatment, disappointment, addictions, temptations, spiritual growth, and more. In the midst of overwhelming situations, believers can find themselves limited in their ability to think and evaluate clearly; therefore, they value the supportive counsel of friends or leaders.

While God's plan is for the church to provide this type of support to each other, unfortunately it sometimes happens that no human counselor answers the cry for help. For some reason the hurting person could be isolated from others, or potential helpers might be unavailable, unaware, unwilling, or unqualified to help. It is hard for those who have not experienced a particular trial to fully grasp the intensity of others' struggles, causing them to underestimate the level of difficulty and, consequently, the need for support.

Regardless of the response of people, God is always available, always aware, always willing, and always qualified to help. When God is the only counselor, He is enough, and He is able to guide believers through every challenge. One who finds himself alone in time of need should consider the following truths.

God is aware of every struggle. "Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows" (Matthew 10:29-31).

God knows how hard the struggle is. "For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin" (Hebrews 4:15). "For He Himself knows our frame; He is mindful that we are but dust" (Psalm 103:14).

God cares about the struggle. "Casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you" (I Peter 5:7). "Just as a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him" (Psalm 103:13).

God wants His children to have victory. "But I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail" (Luke 22:32). "So that the proof of your faith, being much more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ" (I Peter 1:7).

God is actively helping His children to grow. "But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit" (II Corinthians 3:18). "For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus" (Philippians 1:6).

God always provides a way to successfully meet the challenge. "No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way to escape also, so that you will be able to endure it" (I Corinthians 10:13).

God responds to His children's cries for help. "The eyes of the LORD are toward the righteous and His ears are open to their cry" (Psalm 34:15). "Trust in Him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us" (Psalm 62:8).

God has help for every situation. "Seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence" (II Peter 1:3). "Moreover, by them [God's words] Your servant is warned" (Psalm 19:11).

God can open His children's eyes to understand truth. "But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him" (James 1:5). "But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth" (John 16:13).

God can do more than man thinks possible. "Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us" (Ephesians 3:20).

Practically, what do these truths mean for the struggling believer? First, he should welcome God as a viable source of help. God is not the last resort; He is the best resort. Second, the believer must be in the Word. While he may not know exactly where to turn for specific answers, God can lead and speak to a heart that is open. Third, the believer must cry out to God. God responds to a heart that humbly seeks Him, and He gives wisdom to those who ask. That seeking may need to be intense and may need to persevere over a lengthy time, but when someone earnestly, consistently, and dependently seeks God, God will answer.

Christians should not attempt to "go it alone" nor refrain from seeking out godly help when needed, but they must realize that when human sources are deficient, God is enough. It is unfortunate that those who should help sometimes don't, but no believer should feel abandoned or hopeless in the absence of human support. God wants the spiritual success of His children, and He can support them with specific direction and focused guidance in any situation. In fact, it is quite precious when one realizes that a loving, caring God has provided the exact help needed without the involvement of any external person or source.

"My soul waits in silence for God only; from Him is my salvation. He only is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold; I shall not be greatly shaken" (Psalm 62:1-2).

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