Yes, and I will continue to rejoice, for I know that through your prayers and the help given by the Spirit of Jesus Christ, what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance. I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. Philippians 1:18b-20 (NIV)
I want to be a bold witness for you. I want to shine brightly in the darkness of this world. I want to bring glory to your name. You want to say more, don’t you? Yes, I do. A storm has come upon me. I’m in the midst of a very difficult trial. It would be easy for me to become discouraged and depressed. It wouldn’t take much for me to feel alone and rejected or downcast and defeated. I did not cause this trial. I did not deserve this trial. I could not have predicted this trial. I did not see this trial coming. Yet, here I am in the midst of these very difficult and trying circumstances that feel more like two storms coming from different directions. I could wallow in self-pity. I could give up. I could quit. Although, I’m not sure what those choices would even look like. I do know some things for certain. What’s that? I will need your help. If I were to rely on myself, these trials would certainly swamp my life. So, I’m coming to rely on you. I’m asking for your help. That’s good.
What else do you know for certain about these trying circumstances that you are in? These trials are a test and an opportunity. How are they a test? That seems obvious to me. How so? The test question I am being asked is, “Will I come to rely on you, or will I rely on myself?” I will answer that question right now. I will rely on you today, tomorrow and every day after that. That’s good. It is one thing to say that I am relying on you when everything is smooth sailing. It is quite another to demonstrate that I really am relying on you in the storms of life. That is very true. That brings me to my second point. Which is? These trials are an opportunity. How so? I have already touched on that. I can demonstrate to the world that I am relying on you. I can live boldly and shine brightly for you in the midst of these trials. These trials will give me an opportunity to rely on you even more fully. These trials will give me an opportunity to grow in my faith. As my faith in you grows, I will become an even brighter and bolder witness for you in the world. Yes, you will.
Holy Spirit, in my own strength I do not face trials and great difficulty well. I get lost in my own pain and lack of comfort. Help me to trust you and rely on your power to help me to be a bold and bright witness for Christ in every difficulty I will encounter in life. Amen
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