By Rev Trevor Gillanders
Paul wrote: “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful…”
Note the word “taken.” Suddenly you’re “taken” by a set of circumstances you didn’t create, don’t want, and don’t know how to get out of. We can be enjoying life one minute and the next enduring it.
Understand this: You don’t pick the test - the test picks you! You don’t get to choose who breaks your heart, or who gets on your nerves, or who lets you down.
When you first held your child in your arms you didn’t think one day you’d be down at a detention centre trying to get them out of custody.
You couldn’t have known that a routine check up would have you in the hospital fighting a life-threatening illness, or undergoing a course of treatment that scares you.
Maybe your problem is so personal and embarrassing that you’re afraid to even discuss it with anybody. So you walk the floor at night praying, “Lord, get me out of this or I’m finished!” Even Paul wrote: “We despaired…of life.” 2Cor 1:8.
When you’ve been “taken” by a situation you learn three things:
(1) Don’t judge others - The Bible says: “Every man is…drawn away by his own lust, and enticed.” (James 1:14). When you don’t know what somebody’s been through or the circumstances which have conditioned him or her, be quiet. If you have to talk about it, talk to God! Too often we arrive at conclusions merely by how things appear, without thinking of the issues behind it.
(2) Don’t tell your troubles to the wrong people - Look for people who will share your burden, not spread your problem. Someone who has been where you have been, someone who has experienced what you have experienced. Usually they are the one that can best identify with you in your fears and concerns.
(3) Best of all bring it to Jesus - “For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathise with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.” Heb 4:16
Simply put this is saying we do have someone that knows full well what we are going through, because He has come through the same things Himself. Therefore He knows how we feel in every situation. He also has the power to change things.
Nothing ever takes Him by surprise whether it is our fears or our failures, but He promises help for those that turn to Him.
May turning to Him in these times, also be part of your life’s journey.