Shortly before Jesus was betrayed, tried, and crucified, He told the disciples that difficult time lay ahead for them. Followers of Christ have depended on His words in Matthew 24 and 25 for centuries. Jesus gives a sobering list of trials and tribulations that accompany believers in every generation including; false messiahs, betrayers, wars, and earthquakes. He reminds us that no one is exempt from the trials of life on earth from now until the day He returns.
Christians are often confused by trials and tribulations. Our experiences are as mysterious to us as creation, love, and the trinity. It is not easy to understand why we suffer or endure setbacks or even persecution when our hearts would tell us that our God will protect us from harm because He loves us.
Our minds are often clouded in suffering and distress so that we forget things that we know but generally do not think about when days are good. One thing that we should think about is the power and depth of sin in our world. Death and everything associated with it and everything that leads to it is something that mankind’s rebellion has brought into the world. And sin is universal not only because everyone has sinned, but also because everyone’s sin in someway has an effect on everyone else. This in itself makes life dangerous and often unfair causing good people to suffer while evil ones do not.
Living in an uncertain world filled with terrorism, illness, natural catastrophes and heartache are things we must face no matter what kind of faith we have or how we try to live. It seems as if evil takes away as many innocent people as it does evil ones. The better question is not “why” but “how”. How do we live in a difficult world? Jesus gave His disciples great answers.
- Take care of the people of God and the things of God as a steward and servant of all He gives you. He puts us in charge of our lives and sometimes the lives of others and we are to do our best to take care of what He gives us. We are to be faithful and sensible as we live in a cracked up world. (Matthew 24:45-51)
- We are to live in readiness for His return. Jesus is coming to turn the world right-side-up as a reigning king. He is coming and He exhorts us to be ready each day for His reappearing. This means that our first and foremost focus is on Christ and not ourselves.
- We are to live making the most of our talents, gifts, and opportunities. God created life and He cares about everything in our lives-everything. We are to live in response to God’s gifts to us knowing that every day and everything in everyday is important.
Don’t let anything rob you of your understanding that this world is a place where mankind often fails but God is always faithful and gives us lives filled with opportunities to be faithful and effective living and serving Him.