February 27, 2003Email to a FriendPrint
Psalm 60:3 "You have shown Your people desperate times; You have given us wine that makes us stagger."
The psalmist is frank in his approach to God. Like the patriarch Job, he lets his feelings be known. He affirms that God has shown His people hard things. The pious wish of many, namely, that those who have found in Jesus and His atoning sacrifice the happy solution to the problem of sin may expect life to be an undisturbed journey, has no foundation in God's revealed Word.
There are, indeed, hard things in life. In the lives of God's children they are often more easily identified. Christians may feel that as God's people they are entitled to preferential treatment. But for reasons rooted in His wisdom and goodness God does not follow that course. Faith does not thrive on ease but on "hard things." They teach us that, instead of removing difficulty, God draws us to Himself by assuring us that He is an "ever-present help in trouble" (Psalm 46:1).
The tests of life are to make, not break, us. Hard things may demolish a business or deprive one of material security, but in Christ they build up reliance on God. If God designs or permits hard things, close at hand are His counsel and His sustaining hand of love.
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, help me to accept the hard things of life as Your gracious invitation to lay hold of Your sustaining love. Amen.
(Taken from "Words of Promise," copyright 1996, Concordia Publishing House (out of print). For information on other devotional materials, call 1-800-325-3040.)