In This World…

I’m reminded this morning that we live in a fallen world. Pain, death and meanness have invaded my world and I’m reminded of just how difficult life can be.


August 2004 Trip2 018mHow blessed I am to sit here and type about God’s goodness as I hear sirens rushing toward someone in need. How cocooned in my office when I know there are others who are desperately hurting this morning. And yet, I’m not immune to the troubles of this world.


However, I know that regardless of what I encounter today, God will be with me. That’s how I am able to move past the junk I know will come into my life.


Paul understood this as well. We see a few passages of Scripture that lead me to this belief. In 2 Corinthians 11:23-33, Paul shares some of the things he suffered. The hardships that he endured. And on into 2 Corinthians 12, Paul shares his “thorn” with his readers. His conclusion is that there will be pain in this world, but God’s grace will be enough.


Perhaps you’ve heard that God will not give you more than you can bear. I will disagree. God will allow for us to escape temptation and will even provide an escape (1 Corinthians 10:13), but Jesus clearly stated that “in this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33 – NIV)


Paul believed these words of Jesus, even as he was enduring the hardships listed in 2 Corinthians. He also believed his own words recorded in chapter 1 of 2 Corinthians.


“We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raised the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us, as you help us with your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.” (2 Corinthians 1:8-11 – NIV)


Like me, I’m sure you feel discouraged when troubles invade your world. But I also know that when I turn my eyes to the One who is able to deliver me from these troubles, there is hope. When my reliance is upon God instead of myself, when I depend upon God’s grace, and when I believe that Jesus is the Overcomer, I am able to face the day’s grief with a renewed assurance that I will not face it alone.


And here is more great news. There are people who love me so much that they are praying for me. Like Paul, I am surrounded by a great crowd of witnesses who lift me up in prayer. I can almost guarantee you have some of those prayer warriors in your life as well.


If you are going through a difficult situation, please let me know. I’d be honored to offer prayers to God on your behalf.


Our world is filled with conundrums. There is beauty and ugliness. Good and evil. Life and death. I pray today that as you encounter the bad in this world that you are able to rejoice in the good that God has given you. Don’t overlook the gifts that God has provided. And most of all don’t look past your Savior. He is the Overcomer of this world.


Grace and peace be yours in abundance,



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