Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Overcoming Adversity, Depresion, and confusion

Sometimes we feel troubled, confused, persecuted, and cast down; but if the Christian can embrace this passage then there is nothing that can keep them down……

2 Corinthians 4:7-12 (kjv) 7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.8 We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;9 Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;10 Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.11 For we which live are always delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.12 So then death worketh in us, but life in you

Trouble on every side yet not distressed
If you ever feel like every direction you go in is trouble or like you are inside of a big Cube and the side walls of the cube are closing in from the left, right, front, back, top, and bottom. It is OK to feel like that but just know that you WILL NOT BE CRUSHED.
Perplexed but not in despair
If you ever just feel completely confused and you can’t find a way out, nothing seems to come clear to you and it seems like you can’t even think straight. That OK! Just know that you still have hope and that hope can bring you out of the confusion. Just because you are confused doesn’t mean that you don’t have hope. Just because you can’t see your way out doesn’t mean that there isn’t one. You only have hope in things you can not see or it is not hope. A terrible position to be in is to be confused but then not to have any hope for a clear path, or to not have a God to rely on, or not to have people that love you. I would rather be confused all my life versus not have any hope.
Persecuted but not forsaken
If you feel like people and situations are persecuting you, if you feel like you are being harassed or just completely wronged by a person. That's OK. But just know that you have not been forsaken, you have not been forgotten about, you are not a cast away, You are not left to stand alone. Jesus said he would never leave you. Let the persecution come as long as the Christian has Jesus you will be able to stand. As long as we are in the world there will be some form of persecution, but that's OK. God will not always take the persecution from you but will be there to guide you through it. If I knew that the rest of my life there would be some hard times I would rather choose to go THROUGH it knowing I was not alone versus going through it feeling like I was forsaken or a cast away.
Cast down but not destroyed
If you ever feel gloomy, cast down, head hanging low, depressed, or like you have been just struck to the ground. That's Ok. Because you are still alive, you still have existence, you still have natural life and eternal life. You have not been eliminated there is still fight left in you. The Christian can be knocked down but will get back up again and again and again.

A Christian has to realize that there is a part of them that is not like God and has to die every day in order for Jesus’ life, Jesus’ teachings, and Jesus’ ways to become real in their life. We have to die to our sin, our pride, our jealousies, our anger, our unforgiveness, etc. It is ironic, that it often takes us getting to the point where we realize we can't do it alone that God's excellent power brings deliverance. Some of our hard times are seen as Glorious in God's eyes because the hard times nudge us to take our fingerprints off of our lives and yield to His excellent power to bring deliverance. Trouble, confusion, persecution, and depression may come but God's power will hold them at bay so that we won't be distressed, hopeless, forsaken, nor destroyed. This is the treasure we have as Christians: we decrease He increases in our lives and some times adversity is the catalyst to God's excellent power.

Nothing says it better than the chorus of one of my favorite hymns He Brought Me Out :
He brought me out of the miry clay
He set my feet on a rock to stay
He put a song in my soul Today
A song of Praise Hallelujah

If the Christian can embrace the above passage then there is nothing that can keep them down.

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