God's Ministry Of Darkness


by Neil Anderson

 

October 21
2 Corinthians 4:11 
For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh
What is the point of troubled times in our lives? What is God trying to do? What is He trying to teach us? Peter wrote, “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing; so that also at the revelation of His glory, you may rejoice with exultation” (1 Peter 4:12, 13).
In God’s ministry of testing, we learn a lot about ourselves. Whatever is left of simplistic advice such as “Read your Bible” or “Just work harder” or “Pray more” gets stripped away. Most people going through testing times would love to resolve the crisis, but they seemingly can’t and don’t know why.
In God’s ministry of darkness we learn compassion. We learn to wait patiently with people. We learn to respond to the emotional needs of people who have lost hope. We weep with those who weep. We don’t try to teach or instruct or advise. If God took away every external blessing and reduced our assets to nothing more than meaningful relationships, would that be enough to sustain us? Yes, I believe it would.
Perhaps God brings us to the end of our resources so we can discover the vastness of His. We don’t hear many sermons about brokenness in our churches these days, yet in all four Gospels Jesus taught us to deny ourselves, pick up our cross daily, and follow Him. I don’t know any painless way to die to ourselves, but I do know that it’s necessary and that it’s the best possible thing that could ever happen to us.
“No pain, no gain,” says the body builder. Isn’t that true in the spiritual realm as well (Hebrews 12:11)? Proven character comes from persevering through the tribulations of life (Romans 5:3-5). Every great period of personal growth in my life and ministry has been preceded by a major time of testing.
Prayer: Lord, I submit to Your testing so I may come to the end of my resources and joyfully discover Yours.
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Categories: INSPIRATIONAL DEVOTIONS

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4 replies

  1. Yes and amen ,for we living very last time in alot troubles in the world and more that be and we must be wise to be counted to evelasting life in glory and be holy in the Holy Spirit power and quard and help with to be victorious by Christ and watching our hearts daily from sin and from the wicked life,thanks and bless and pray,keijo sweden

  2. God tells us He does not afflict us ( see below) but yes we suffer because we reap the evil we sow before heart repentance and because we live in a fallen world and others hurt us too and because Satan causes suffering through trials and testing, as also confirmed in the Scriptures below.
    Lamentations 3: 33 For God doth not afflict willingly nor grieve the children of men.
    1Peter 1:6-7 Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
    James 1:12-14 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that Love Him. Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
    Hebrews 4:15-16 For we have not an High Priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
    God does not use evil to bring good out of it to say this even about Christians is slander but He does use everything for good in our lives and regardless of what we encounter, He is with us and gives us the strength to endure and also protects our Soul, His planes for us are good not evil.
    Isaiah 43:1-3 – Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. For I am the LORD, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour.”
    Jeremiah 29 :11-12 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.
    James 117 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
    Christian Love from both of us – Anne.

Luke 21:36 "Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man."

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