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The Answer In Tough Times

“And the answer is…”

Wouldn’t it be great if the answers to life’s questions appeared on the display board the way they do on the TV Game shows? “We surveyed 100 people and the top seven answers are on the board.” The Game Show Host reads the question and the contestants call out the answers and the board displays the results.

Maybe we would look for answers to some of the following questions: “Should I go to college?” And the answer is… “Is this the person I should marry or should I break off the relationship?” And the answer is… “This job is offering to increase my salary by over 50% but it requires me to move to a different city, away from my family. Should I take it or not?” And the answer is…

If only it was that easy.

One person may look at the situations and call them questions. Another person will view them and call them problems. Still another may see them and refer to them as opportunities. Semantics, one might say. Regardless of what you call it, it is the answers that bring about the challenges and discomfort. And we have become a society that wants to avoid discomfort at all costs. Even if it means not getting the benefit and learning by going through a tough time.

I have come to understand that we are strengthened, enlightened, made to become wiser by dealing with the various challenges that we encounter. In the Scriptures, James, the brother of Christ, said it like this, “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.” James 1:2-5 KJV

In fact, many people would go as far as to say that individuals who are not permitted to deal with the challenges of making decisions are handicapped in the maturation process. Now, of course I am not suggesting that the best way to learn everything is first-hand experience. That is foolish. It’s like the quote says, “If at first you don’t succeed, skydiving is not for you.” However, I would also stress that there are some things that can never be properly explained and have to be experienced.

I don’t think the problem is the questions. I think people have this longing to always be in control of everything that relates to them. I have observed people who were confronted with a decision, stare at the obvious answer and then still choose a different option. Maybe it is just the nature of humanity. So many times we have seen other people, who were confronted with a difficult choice, make a decision that did not work out in their favor. Sometime later, we find ourselves in a similar situation with many of the same factors, and instead of choosing an option differently than our friends/family/neighbor (fill in the blank), we make the same decision they made and get the same unfavorable results.

I am convinced that once man sinned in the garden, it was never the intent to live life without error. We are expected to live our lives by faith. We are to confront our situations based on the instructions given to us in the Life Manual (The Holy Scriptures). When we come to a crossroad we are to proceed prayerfully and patiently, trusting completely in God's promises to us. We are encouraged in the scriptures that, during the times of our adversity, we are to present out cares to God and He promises deliverance. Luke 18:7-8 says, “And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?” (KJV)

How are you responding to the difficult situations you face? Where are you placing your trust? Are you running away during the tough times or are you standing firm, waiting patiently to be matured?

Share your thoughts.

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