When Your World Turns Upside Down
Sometimes we think if we are following God’s will, our life is going to be free from doubts and confusion. We assume following God’s leading means we will have a clear understanding of what is expected of us. This assumption is incorrect.
While it is true living a life outside of God’s will usually produces great turmoil and heartache, living in His will does not automatically mean a life of tranquility. There are two reasons for this. First, problems help keep us humble and they encourage us to be dependent upon God. Second, for his own personal reasons, God may have intentionally planned a life full of problems for you. Even if you are perfectly following God’s will, your life may still be filled with doubts, uncertainties and astonishing troubles.
A great example of this is Mary and Joseph, the parents of Jesus. God had given them a very direct, clear, and noble mission: To raise Jesus, the Son of God. When angels directly delivered God’s message to them, there was very little room left for doubt or confusion. Yet, they faced very challenging problems. First, Joseph, and especially Mary, had to deal with the humiliation of being pregnant outside of marriage. When Mary was first told about this special child she was going to bear, she probably thought the angels were going to announce it to everyone. This didn’t happen. Apart from a select few, no one knew of the true origin of the child within her.
Second, during her pregnancy she was greatly inconvenienced by having to travel a great distance because of the census. Third, once they arrived at Bethlehem, there was no place for this pregnant woman to stay. This would be frustrating enough for any expectant parent, but being entrusted with such a special child I’m sure made them even more apprehensive. Fourth, Herod tried to kill Jesus, so they had to flee to Egypt. Fifth, they had to move to Nazareth because they were afraid of Archelaus. Sixth, when Jesus was 12, they couldn’t find him for three days. Can you imagine the fear they must have felt thinking they might have failed to fulfill their special mission? I’m sure there were many more problems they encountered while raising this Godchild.
The reason I share this with you is to encourage you during your times of adversities. You may think the troubles you are experiencing are a result of sin in your life or maybe you have misunderstood God’s leading. You may feel that if you were actually in the center of God’s will your life would not be falling apart all around you. Study the lives of Joseph, Moses and Lot and try to put yourself in their place. Try to get a sense of how they might have felt.
It is possible the troubles you are experiencing may be a result of sin and turning from God. Only you can answer that question. However, you may be experiencing troubles because you are following God’s will. I can’t think of anyone who had a clearer mission than Mary and Joseph, and yet, I’m sure they were full of confusion and doubt.
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