What is the point of going through times when nothings seems to be going right? In the last week I have been talking to several who are experiencing very difficult situations and they feel the storm and darkness is overtaking them. They are like most who go through times like this. They ask, “What is the purpose in this and where is God when I cry out to Him and hear no answer?” Remember Joseph?
J. Oswald Sanders correctly observes; “Land that knows nothing but sunshine becomes a desert. Clouds, storms, and darkness must have their place if there is to be fertility and fruitfulness.” There are times when we have no idea why we are “walking through the valley of the shadow of death” (Psalm 23:4). David knew this kind of darkness. He says in Psalm 116:3-4; “The snares of death encompassed me; the pangs of Sheol laid hold on me; I suffered distress and anguish.”
These conditions are not the end of the story! David continues; “Then I called on the name of the Lord; “O Lord, I pray, deliver my soul!” I invite you to read the rest of this Psalm. The Bible says of Joseph, “The Lord was with Joseph and showed him steadfast love” (Genesis 39:21). Not only is God helping us to grow spiritually through our trials, He is increasing His praise and we learn to draw closer to Him in the trials. Even if you are not physically delivered from the troubles, turn your disappointment into praise and thanksgiving and watch the darkness and shadows depart.
J. Oswald Sanders, Enjoying Intimacy with God, Discovery House, 2000, page 96.
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