The Lord is more pleased when we do what is right and just
than when we offer him sacrifices. Proverbs 21:3
Today, I was thinking about a trial that I had to walk through a few years ago. This was not a trial that I brought on myself. It was one that God had chosen for me. He gave me directions to do a particular thing that required a great deal of courage. I didn't realize just how much courage it would take until after I obeyed him. The opposition that came from making this decision caused me to shed tears, question people's loyalty to me, and question my own ability to hear from God. Was this God's plan in the first place? Did I move in fear or faith? Did I miss God altogether?
In hindsight, I recognize that it was all His plan. Like Abraham climbing up the mountain to offer Isaac as a sacrifice, God's plan was to see if I would obey him even when it did not make sense. Even when it would generate adversity, would I obey him? Today I recognize that His plan was to show me how strong I was in certain areas and how weak I was in others. His plan was to prepare me for the greater work that he had called me to do. In the end, I recognized that His plan was to show me that He knows the end from the beginning and everything would work for my good and His purpose.
I learned from that trial that doing right (obeying God) isn't always easy and what is easy isn't always right. In hindsight, I remember thinking, if I would have had a choice, I would have chosen to offer God a sacrifice of some kind instead of walking down that path. It would have been so much easier. But that was not His design. His design was to give me peace in the place where my understanding was baffled and strength where my flesh was weak.
What about you? Are you facing a trial that is not of your own making? Have you tried to bargain with God, compromise with the enemy, or convince yourself to quit, in order to avoid this trial? And if so, how's that working for you?
Let me encourage you to hang in there. There are many great lessons to be learned during this experience if you just submit to the will of God. I learned that it is much easier to obey God than it is to disobey him. While choosing another path may have seemed easier for me, it would not have been the right thing for me to do. The right thing was to please God.
The other thing I learned is that great glory comes AFTER the trial is over. In the meantime, God will will give you the grace that is necessary to make it through. Keep doing what is right and just because it is pleasing to the Lord and He will reward you greatly. Don't let this year end until you have obeyed God fully in whatever He has called you to do.
Blessings and peace to you,