The Struggle before the Peace

December 10, 2008

The Struggle before the Peace

December 10, 2008

By: Samuel Crawford Jr.

 

 

The Struggle is something I have to embrace, why because it confronts me face to face. ….THE STRUGGLE….

 

The struggle is like the wind on a cold winter day, biting as it blows across the face.  A threat it brings and a sting it does too, if left uncovered you are through.

 

It doesn’t ask if you, it may touch.  It doesn’t ask if you even mind if it blows.  It just blows and blows, causing shivers to run from your head to your toes. 

 

It makes you wish you had a heavier coat, but in your face it does gloat.  It knows there is nothing you can do to move it; it knows that there is nothing you can do to it.

 

Oh so much the wind is like the devil, thinking he is on another level.  The wind has it’s devices to make you think that you have no control; the wind is as satan a defeated foe.

 

The devil likes to blow our direction, hoping to divert our faith and attention.  As he did with the disciples in a boat out at sea, satan sent a storm to overturn their faith.

 

The wind blew and blew, every disciple knew there was power, and there was destruction.  They knew that this storm was meant to bring the end.

 

But something happened as they cried out…Jesus awoke out of His sleep.  Opening His eyes He took a peek, to see just what had caused His disciples to struggle.

 

Of course Jesus knew what they faced; He only wanted to increase their faith.  So He slept in order to allow this storm to come.

 

Yet when their struggle caused them to grow weak, they began to cry out, Jesus save us, for me this is too much!  Lord, if you don’t do something we’re all going down.

 

A moment longer, Jesus let the winds blow, still allowing the waves it created to crash onto the boat.  Then slowly He stood, raised His hands and spoke, “Peace, be still!”

 

That very moment the wind stood still, and the sea became as a sheet of glass.  No sign was left that there was ever any trouble.  The clouds in the sky left on the double.

 

Jesus asks them, “Why did you fear?”  “Have you no faith?”  He reminds them that with every temptation, God has made a way out.

 

The disciples ask, “What kind of man is this that the wind and the waves obey Him?”  Than there comes a laugh, as the disciples realize that there never really was any trouble.

 

The wind has no image and no one knows where it comes from or where it goes.  Yet it is a reality that we all must face, because it affects us day to day.

 

The disciples realize, like the wind on a cold winter day, that you can’t stop the wind from coming your way.  You can’t stop the waves from beating, to overturn your vessel.

 

Notice that Jesus never stopped the storm from coming.  He never diverted the waves from their boat.  He never even told them what they would face that day.

 

It is the same for us; we go through struggles that we never imagined.  We face things we thought God should have saved us from.

 

We feel alone as though no one is there and no one even cares.  We look for an answer, a way out and in the end all we can do is shout; “Jesus do you even care?”

 

For my world is in chaos, I don’t know what to do.  Jesus do you hear me?  What do I do?  Lord, do You care we are perishing?  Do you care that we drown?

 

Lord, do You care I have cancer?  Or that I struggle to remain pure?  Do you care that I am lonely?  Do you care that I have no money for rent?

 

Lord, do you see me, trying to do right?  Lord, do you hear me crying in the night?  Lord, do You care for me at all?  Or am I just talking to the wall?

 

That’s what we sometimes think as we try to do His will.  Often times battered and discouraged from a hard long fight.

 

As the disciples learned so must we, that Jesus is the one that set us on this path.  He knew the way we were going to go. 

 

He knew what awaited us and what we would do.  He knew how it would begin and even how it would end.  Yet, He didn’t stop it from happening.

 

He knew we would meet something to challenge our faith.  He knew we’d struggle at times to keep the faith.  He knew, HE KNEW!!!

 

Does that mean He DOES NOT CARE, since He let it happen?  Does it mean God is not real because trouble happens?

 

NO!!!  Jesus came to bring us life.  Jesus came to show us a better way.  Jesus came to die for us.  Jesus came to heal the sick!

 

Jesus came to destroy the devil’s works.  Jesus came to deliver His people.  Jesus came to give us hope.  Jesus came to show us the way.

 

Jesus came to restore that which was lost.  Jesus came with words of life.  Jesus came because there was no other way! 

 

Jesus knows the troubles and struggles that we face, and still He says nothing to cause us to change direction.  But He does give us promises to hold onto while we stay the course!

 

I may have to embrace the struggle, but the battle is not mine alone.  Jesus said He is with us even unto the end, but in Him we must depend.

 

Jesus never said that it was going to be easy, that you never will struggle.  He never said we won’t be sick or won’t get laid off.

 

Jesus never said there won’t be persecutions and trouble.  He never said you’re on your own.  Jesus never said you’d always have a place to call home.

 

It is true we all have different trials that we all must face, but it is important for us to remember He has given us His grace.

 

Jesus told the Apostle Paul, when he prayed THREE different times to remove the thorn from his side that “My grace is sufficient for you!”

 

Jesus didn’t take the thing that was causing Paul much pain and suffering away.  Instead, told him that He had given him grace to endure it.

 

The struggles we face and pray constantly for God to remove us from are the same as the thorn in Paul’s side.  It causes us pain and much suffering.

 

It puts our faith on the spot, will we believe Him or not?  Jesus tells us that He gave us grace and now it is time for us to have faith. 

 

These struggles are not to make us give up, but for us to have our faith in God increase as He brings us out.  For surely IF GOD put us in it He will surely bring us out. 

 

Today you may be struggling with Finances, Loneliness, Relationship Challenges, Depression, Rejection, Challenges at Work, Terminal Illness, Changes, Career Transition, Stress, Death of a loved one, Low Self-Esteem, Insecurities, Lose of Job and many other things, but there is ONE message that Jesus wants you to know through your struggle…That when the time is right Jesus cares enough to stand up for YOU, raise His hands and say to your situations “PEACE, BE STILL!!!”   It doesn’t matter what it is, the situation will have to listen.  God just wants you to have faith in HIM!!!  Remember, He doesn’t always take away all of the problems we face, but if we will trust in him, when we have endured as a good soldier in Christ Jesus, He will deliver us!!!  JESUS LOVES YOU AND CARES ENOUGH FOR YOU TO STAND UP, RAISE HIS HANDS AND SAY TO THE SITUATIONS YOU FACE…PEACE BE STILL!!!!!

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One Response to “The Struggle before the Peace”

  1. Peter Toland said

    this blessed me

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