The Hard Places

January 23, 2017

The Hard Places

Genesis 18:14

Is any thing too hard for the LORD?…

Are you in a hard place today?  Does an answer and a solution seem almost impossible?  Then we must pose the same question that the Lord posed to Sarah, Abraham’s wife, who laughed when the Lord told Abraham that she would have a son in her old age.  Sarah, being around ninety years old and her husband being older had a hard time believing even the Lord when He spoke this word to Abraham.  “Is anything too hard for the Lord?”  

There are times in our lives when we are in those hard places where the only place we have to look is up.  Unfortunately, so many of us leave God as our last resource rather than our first.  This is often why our situations go from bad to worse.   The Lord wants our hearts to be submitted wholly to His will and purpose.  It is often the hard places in our lives that bring us back to a place of humility and desperation for Him.   There is no where else to turn, so we turn to Him.  Sarah laughed because she didn’t see how even God could give her a child in her state of life and yet He did just as He said He would do.  We have a bad habit of pretty much shutting God out of our lives when things are going well, but here we come running when things go south.  While the Lord is so often gracious to help us in these times of need, it isn’t always, as we would expect it to be.  The Lord is interested in something more eternal than our immediate crisis.  Sometimes we don’t get the answers we think we want, because there are times God allows things to be torn down, so that He can do a new thing that could never happen if we continued on as we have been.  “Nothing is too hard for God,”but then “His ways are not our ways,” so the results and answers to our cries in these hard places may be different than we had anticipated.  We can never put God in a box and say He will do things a certain way, even if He did do them that way last time.  

The hard places are the places we stand upon the Word of God and His promises.  It is also a place where we must say, “not my will, but thy will be done.”   The promises of God are for a purpose.  They are not there to meet our every whim and desire; they are given that we may be partakers of the divine nature.  “Hereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. (2 Peter 1:4).”  Sometimes our hard places are the result of the corruption that is in the world and in us.  God’s promises are to bring us out of that place and not to pacify and accept it.  If God doesn’t seem to be meeting our cries for His help in those hard places maybe we need to step back and see why we might be there and what we need to do correct areas of our life that may have brought us to that place.  

We are speaking in general terms, but that Holy Spirit wants to talk to some of us today.  He wants us to know that nothing is too hard for Him, but what we see as deliverance may only result in our further destruction.  How many times have we seen kids get themselves into dire straits, which were really the consequences of their actions?  If we as parents always bailed them out, then the consequences never worked there intended purpose which was to bring correction and discipline to turn that person away from making more bad choices.  That is why God doesn’t always rescue us.  There may be lessons we need to learn first, there may be areas we need to seek the Lord about and areas we need to repent and ask forgiveness.  

God is there for us in those hard places, but those hard places are there to do a greater work of grace in us.  1 Peter 4:12-19 puts our trials in perspective to what the will of the Lord is: “Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.  If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy [are ye]; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.  But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or [as] a thief, or [as] an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters. Yet if [any man suffer] as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf. For the time [is come] that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if [it] first [begin] at us, what shall the end [be] of them that obey not the gospel of God?  And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?  Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls [to him] in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.”  Through your hard places allow the Lord to have His perfect work in you.  Hold fast to Him no matter how he chooses to answer.  Job waited a long time to see His answer, but he never lost his confidence toward the Lord and we mustn’t either.  God is faithful in His time and His way not ours.  “Nothing is too hard for Him.”

Blessings,

#kent

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