Life with problems in this fallen world is common to us all. The Bible reiterates this sentiment in Job 14 v 1: Man who is born of woman is of few days and full of trouble.
Becoming a child of God does not exempt us from trials, but as we apply the truths of the Bible to those difficulties, we experience the helping hand of the Almighty God. The following are five Christian perspectives which aid us in the direction of our lives.
1. WAIT ON THE LORD
There are times in the Christian life when a period of waiting is required to discern the Lord's plan. This can be a time of testing and often discouragement comes when nothing seems to be happening. Advice can be useful from more mature Christians who may be able to provide contacts and practical information. I am deeply grateful for all the help received in this area as a young believer.
The Lord guides those who sincerely desire to do His will in His time. God's general plan is revealed in the Bible for believers, but uncovering His specific plan necessitates prayer, patience and faith.
Therefore the LORD will wait, that He may be gracious to you;
And therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you.
For the LORD is a God of justice;
Blessed are all those who wait for Him.
The door of opportunity
2. LET GOD OPEN DOORS
Open doors was a principle Paul employed as He was guided by the Holy Spirit in his missionary journeys. If you are knocking on a closed door and God doesn't open it, it isn't for you. Signs that He has opened the door include precise timing and a swift working out of plans, usually without obstacles, and a sense of peace. However, there are times when the enemy tries to impede us and this is where spiritual discernment is necessary, but from my experience, arrangements are often made promptly after a time of waiting. When God opens the door, nothing can close it:
See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it.
Embracing the moment
3. BE READY TO SHARE YOUR HOPE
The young girl pictured above adopted various poses as she spontaneously embraced freedom of movement in the setting. We too should always be ready to share our hope, joy and satisfaction in life with others when opportunities arise.
Our beliefs should never be forced on people, however, as our Lord never used this strategy. He always welcomed the listening heart and allowed His hearers to accept or reject His message. Some are called to public evangelism, while others can quietly distribute literature and witness on a personal basis. Social media provides a platform to spread the Gospel and should be used for God's glory.
But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.
1 Peter 3:15
4. FIND HELP FROM GOD
We are not expected to run the race on our own strength. The Bible exhorts us to approach the throne of grace and ask for mercy and help. The One on the throne fully understands the frailty of humanity as He too shared the human experience during His time on earth, without sin.
For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
5. KEEP A SENSE OF AWE
Children often walk around with wide eyes as they encounter new experiences. With maturity, we tend to lose this sense of awe. We form habits and lose our sense of adventure and delight. In a similar way, as believers we become so familiar with Bible passages and Christian truth that we sometimes gloss over them. Reading a different translation of a passage can impact its meaning in a fresh way. Often we complicate principles by overanalysing them or fitting them into some 'theological' framework the writer never intended. It is rewarding to read the Bible as though reading it for the first time.
A sense of awe can be retained by looking at nature and seeing God's majestic power in creation. When we remember how great He is and how dependent we are on His grace and mercy, we are led to worship. Alistair Begg sums it up, 'Only when we are captured by an overwhelming sense of awe and reverence in the presence of God, will we begin to worship God in spirit and in truth.'
Let all the earth fear the LORD;
Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.
For young Christians who are setting out in life, these five perspectives will help discern the direction of your path while maturing in the faith. Be encouraged to pursue God's will for your days on earth and give Him the glory.
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