Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Monday, May 15, 2017
“God’s purpose in all this was to use the church to display his wisdom in its rich variety to all the unseen rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. This was his eternal plan, which he carried out through Christ Jesus our Lord. Because of Christ and our faith in him, we can now come boldly and confidently into God’s presence. So please don’t lose heart because of my trials here. I am suffering for you, so you should feel honored” (Ephesians 3:10–13, NLT).
Cooperate With God Through Trials
God is up to something. He always is. Trials we suffer for Christ’s sake are measured and allowed by God to become the story of encouragement sinners need to bring them to repentance. So, first thing, let us cooperate with God while He transfers our citizenship from the kingdom of darkness to His kingdom of light. As He reveals His ways of right-living, we thank Him. We ask how to move in accordance with that revelation. He strengthens the weak. He teaches the ignorant. He encourages the despondent. He provides for the destitute. We need simply to yield our every thought, motive, and action to Him and be willing to be His voice to those who need a word from Him, His hands to those needing help.
So, do not lose courage when your brothers and sisters have trials for Christ’s sake. When they (or you) do His will and persecutions come because of it, realize that God is up to something. Through every believer’s difficulties, He is manifesting His power to take the worst Satan can throw at us and causing us to triumph.
Jesus’ life is the best example of this. He always went about doing good. He lived a sinless life. He was continually buffeted and persecuted by evil forces. They even sought to take His life. He volunteered His life and died on Calvary’s cross. Yet, even the grave could not hold Him. The absolute worst that the devil had in his arsenal could not hold Jesus. He came from the grave with the keys to hell, death, and the grave, which He will one day cast into the lake of fire. Now the entire watching universe can clearly see the power of God on full display.
So here’s God’s Word to you today: Embrace God’s love. Repent of any known sins. Allow God to carry you through all of your trials. Allow Him to use your story to prove that He is able to save anyone willing to be saved, and to finally destroy hell, death, and the grave. God is up to something. Get on His side and do your part to bring His plans to fruition.