Do you often wonder why you face struggles in life? Does it feel as though you are continually having to overcome obstacles? Are you looking for rest? Do you have an anchor to hold on to during the storms of life? There is One who you can reach out to.
We face many struggles, stumbling blocks, obstacles, and downright storms in our lives. Some are relatively small struggles, while others are major storms. When we rely solely on ourselves, those struggles and storms can overwhelm us.
Many want to believe they can handle it on their own. Some will reach out to family or friends to help with the situation. A few will seek professional counseling as they go through a tough time. Those who lean on God are just as likely to reach out to others as well, yet be stronger as they go through the situation than those who don’t.
Paul instructs us in his letter to the Romans to be joyful in our hope. The hope he is talking about is not mere wishing for something. It is a hope that is defined by trust in God, confidence that God will deliver on His promises, and comfort by taking refuge in God. Our hope is much stronger than a wish, it is grounded in faith. It is latched to an Anchor.
He goes on to say we are to be patient in our affliction. This is to say that we can’t rush through the situation. We must wait on God to handle it. Patience is something we have grown to dislike very much. We don’t like waiting. We want the situation fixed right now. Yet God handles the situation in His time and His timing is perfect. As our trust in Him grows, so does our patience.
Finally, Paul says we are to be faithful in prayer. Prayer is our lifeline, our communication channel with God. We must keep in mind that true communication is bi-directional. This means we must listen for God, not just talk to Him. Listening as part of prayer is extremely important. If we are asking God to guide us through a situation, how can we follow His guidance if we aren’t listening for it? God doesn’t typically speak through burning bushes, but He does speak to us. We often miss His guidance due to our failure to listen.
When we pray, we do need to make our requests known. Once we’ve done that, we must wait patiently for God to handle it. He may handle it by providing us guidance or He may work through someone else. However, we must continue to pray, making our requests known and seeking His solution, all while trusting Him.
I pray we all experience joy in our hope. I pray we wait patiently while going through difficult situations. I pray each of us will continue to pray in faith and trust God in all things. Be joyful. Hold on to your hope. Wait patiently. Be strong in your faith. Pray continually.
Romans 12:12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.