I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace. In the world you have tribulation and distress and suffering, but be courageous [be confident, be undaunted, be filled with joy]; I have overcome the world.” [My conquest is accomplished, My victory abiding.] – John 16:33 AMP
It is a fact that we live in a world where we often experience chaos, sorrows and troubles; but God did not create the world like this, and He never meant His creation to suffer and be in distress. However, everything & everyone on earth is [negatively] affected by the fall. Besides, the devil and his minions have corrupted the earth through their diabolical and wicked activities which are hidden to the eyes of the naturally-minded man.
From the day that the first humans [Adam & Eve] fell from glory and were removed from God’s presence, evil had been present in the world; the killing of Abel by his own big brother attests to this fact (See Genesis 4).
The believers’ reaction or attitude when going through challenges
Everyone on earth – both the believer and the unbeliever – will experience troubles at one time or the other in their lives. Most unbelievers try to bury their troubles under alcohol, drugs and other similar vices, but the believer is told to be courageous and stay full of joy drawing from Christ. This sounds crazy because joy and courage are intangible, but truth is that they are powerful once we know how to tap into them and put them to work in our lives.
One of the reasons why Jesus tells us to be joyful even in the midst of trouble is this: it is a pathway to experiencing the victory bought for us by the blood He shed on the cross. If we resort to complaining and griping, the troubles will be magnified and we will not see the path to victory.
How to prepare
Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. – Ephesians 5:16 NKJV
There’s no better way to prepare for challenges than to abide in God’s presence continually and learn to listen to His voice. The voice of the Lord warns us of [physically unseen] danger and tells us what to do. Whether He speaks to us directly in our hearts, through the Holy Spirit, through the pages/verses of Scripture, through dreams or visions, or through other believers – it will do us no good if we don’t learn how to discern His communications.
How to stay true and strong
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. When you walk through fire, you will not be scorched, nor will the flame burn you. – Isaiah 43:2 AMP
When troubles come our way, the enemy often tries to make us feel like God has turned His back on us; but that’s a lie! Are you a child of God who lives his/her life to please the Lord and do His will? If yes, then He is with you in every situation. You should stay strong by learning to rejoice even when you don’t feel like it. Here are five practical steps you should take:
- Sing songs of praise to the Lord and rejoice (dance) in His presence regularly.
- Refuse to focus on the negative situations but rather look for many reasons to thank God for.
- Call to memory how God has done certain things for you in the past and thank Him for those times.
- Feed your mind and spirit with the Word of God and use whatever encourages you or boosts your faith.
- Stay in fellowship with fellow believers, and if possible, get a prayer partner with whom you can pray on a regular basis
Doing these constantly will run the devil off your environment and God’s presence will overshadow you to show you the way out or to shield you from the negative influences of the same trouble. Jesus is conqueror over all, and you will find rest, victory and peace when you learn to abide in His presence.