Job 11:7-8 Giving False Counsel

Can you search out the deep things of God? Can you find out the limits of the Almighty? They are higher than heaven–what can you do? Deeper than Sheol–what can you know? Job 11:7-8

There is always someone who has an opinion about what another person is going through. Many love to counsel that person with giving their opinion on how to deal with whatever situation that they are found to be in. Although some of the counsel may be good, very often they are based on the wrong baseline and become false or bad counseling.

Zophar asks Job is he could search out and know the deep things of God or the limits of God. Later he tells Job that he must repent of his sins to overcome the troubles he is in.

Standing on the outside the troubles that a person is going through can look entirely different than what is really occurring. It is easy for one to think of it as a problem of the individual’s choices when it may have absolutely nothing to do with the choices made. There are times when outside forces have brought on the trouble.

Believers in the church that are watching someone go through an extremely difficult time are quick to tell them to repent of any sin that they have done. This is often done because of the false belief that believers should never go through trouble unless they have done something wrong against God.

Zophar had it right when he stated that one cannot fully know the deep things of God. He did not understand that God was using the troubles to prove Job as righteous. Unless God gives full revelation, a believer cannot know fully what is going on.

Giving false counsel to repent will lead one down the wrong path. Believers must be careful in how they counsel ones going through trouble.

As you are watching a friend or loved one go through an extremely difficult time, be careful what counsel you give them. While there may be sin in that person’s life, it may also be a time of God proving them and building them up in their faith. Their lives may be a witness of God’s power in their lives.

Seek God first before you give counsel and see what He has to say and then say only that.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Lord and Savior; that God will reveal to you when you are giving false counsel; that God will open your eyes to what He is doing; and that you will trust God in your own life during difficult times.

1 Kings 20:28 God Of The Hills And Valleys

The man of God came up and told the king of Israel, “This is what the Lord says: Because the Arameans think the Lord is a god of the hills and not a god of the valleys, I will deliver this vast army into your hands, and you will know that I am the Lord.” 1 Kings 20:28

Every person has hills of good times and valleys of difficult times in their lives. When there are difficult times, many think that they are alone and no one will help them. The world thinks that God is gone when there are difficult times occurring.

After being overcome in the hills by the Israelites, the Arameans decided to attack Israel in the valleys. They felt God was only God of the hills and not the valleys. God said He would deliver them into the hands of the Israelites because of their thinking.

The world is quick to attack believers in any way that they can. When a believer is down, the world believes that they are winning, and that God is not strong enough where they are attacking.

Believers will have strong faith in God when things are going great, and they are on top of the hill winning the battles. However, when things begin to get difficult, many will begin to doubt God’s strength and abilities.

It is dark in the bottom of the valley, and one cannot see the big picture. Being in the valley of difficulty may make it appear as if the world is winning the war and that God has left the believer on his own.

God is everywhere and is in control everywhere. He is right beside the believer who trusts in Him while he is in the valley. One can find strength and victory in God, even while he is in the valley of difficulty and destruction.

You will have days of victory in which you feel you are on a mountaintop. Other days you will be in struggles in which you are in a valley and may feel as though God has abandoned you or is not strong enough.

Do not give up but put your faith in God. No matter where you are in life, God is still God, and He is in control. He is God whether you are in a valley or on top of the mountains, in your good and difficult times.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Lord and Savior; that you will know God’s presence and strength in every situation in your life; that you will know God is in control of every situation; and that God can deliver you from the hands of the enemy wherever you are.

Genesis 26:2 Don’t Go To Egypt

The Lord appeared to Isaac and said, “Do not go down to Egypt; live in the land where I tell you to live.” Genesis 26:2

During difficult times people will attempt to find someplace easier to go to get away from their difficulties. Sometimes it is physically moving to a new place to live, but often it is moving to a new job, new friends or some other change, rather than facing the difficulties.

It can look easier and greener in another location causing the desire to move. While sometimes it may be greener, other times it is jumping out of the pan into the fire.

During a major famine in the land, Isaac gets ready to move to a new area. God tells him to not go to Egypt, but to stay in the land where God puts him, and that God would bless him there.

Walking the path in life that God places a person does not always look like the best path from the human viewpoint. Fleeing hard times is the first thing that most people want to do. They want to be in control of their life and do not want hard struggles.

Seeing a different path will often look easier, but one cannot see all that God sees on that path. God has each person on a path in life for a purpose and while on that path, He will provide for all that is needed.

The best spot that a person can be in is the location that God has told him to be, regardless if that is home, job, church, or any other place. God can provide better than anyone or anything in this world will ever provide. Despite the famine, God can bless richly when He is trusted and obeyed.

Famines will arise in your life, whether famine of food or of provision or something else. Rather than running to Egypt or the world to meet your needs, seek God’s direction.

Work to ensure that you are living in the place God has called you to live. Only move when God says to move. God can and will provide more abundantly than anyone or anything on this earth can provide.

Going to Egypt may ensnare you in the enemy’s trap of greed and selfishness and pull you away from God. Do not go to Egypt but live where God has placed you.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Lord and Savior; that you will obey God’s commands to you; that you will trust God’s provision in your life; that you will run to God, not Egypt for your needs; and that God will strengthen you in your walk with Him.

Genesis 47:9 Few And Difficult Years

Hourglass

And Jacob said to Pharaoh, “The years of my pilgrimage are a hundred and thirty. My years have been few and difficult, and they do not equal the years of the pilgrimage of my fathers.” Genesis 47:9

At times, living life can seem to be a long time. This becomes especially true when one is going through difficult times. The more difficult the time, the longer the time. Time will feel as though it has slowed down or even stopped altogether.

When things are going good, time seems to speed up and go super fast. It appears as if there is not enough time to do all the fun things that a person wants to do or has started to do. Yet, in reality, time is the same for every person and is neither faster nor slower at any time during one’s life.

These feelings are no different for believers. They have the same challenge of feeling how fast or slow time seems to go.

Many believers think that the Old or New Testament saints always had it easy and things went great for them all the time. Jacob had told Pharaoh that his years had been few and difficult. It had not been an easy road for him. Paul went through struggle after struggle as he lived on this earth. Jesus was persecuted and finally killed in less than 40 years.

Jesus promised hard times would come in a person’s life, but He also promised that He would be with the person through it all. Jacob did not complain about his struggles, but just made it a statement that he had them.

Regardless of whether a person lives to be one hundred and forty or only until he is forty, his life is short. It is short compared to all eternity. The question is what a person will do with those few and difficult years.

You may be going through difficult times, that seems to last forever. It is not lasting forever, it is only a short time in light of all eternity.

Keep your eyes on Jesus and live for God during the difficult times. Trust that He knows what He is allowing in your life. Do what you can for God, while you have life on this earth. It is only a short time, a vapor and it will be over and eternity will begin.

What are you doing with your short, few and difficult years on this earth for God?

I pray today that you will know God’s will for your life; that you will trust God at all times; that you will dedicate your life to God; and that God will help you see how short life really is.

Psalm 107:2 Tell Your Story

Let the redeemed of the LORD tell their story–those he redeemed from the hand of the foe, Psalm 107:2

Looking at a person who is successful and appears to have made it, looks like he had made it with no challenges or problems. It just appears that he was in the right place at the right time. The truth of the matter is, that every person who is successful, had to go through a lot of hard times to get there.

This includes those in the world and believers in Jesus.

After going through an extremely difficult time, most people want to forget about it. They want to put it in the past and leave it there. Thinking about that difficult time usually bring up bad feelings. Blaming others and God for that situation often occurs.

Hearing about a person’s difficult time and how God brought them through it, can be encouraging to others. Success stories are always something that most people like to hear about. It gives a person encouragement that he can make it or be successful.

In this world, the stories of people who have made it rag-to-riches are stories people like to hear about.

As a believer, you also have a rag-to-riches story to be told. You were captured by the enemy, bound up in sin, unable to rescue  yourself. Then Jesus came along and broke the chains that bound you and set you free. He bought you back from the enemy. Today you are a child of the King.

You have a story to tell about how that happened. Your story is different from every other person’s story on this earth. No two people have the exact same story as to what God has done in them and for them.

Think about the people in the Bible, Abraham, Moses, David, Jeremiah, Isaiah, John, Peter, Paul and many others. Each one has a different story, but all of them have the part that God redeemed them.

Your story is that God has redeemed you. Encourage someone today and tell the story of what you have been through and how God had saved you. Tell about how God had met some of your needs in your life. Do not forget your story of God working in your life. It can and will be an encouragement to someone else.

Tell your story today.

I pray today that you will see what God has done for you; that you will tell others what God has done for you; that others will see what God has done for you; and that many will seek God because of your story.