Presentation on theme: "Trouble can come to anyone at anytime. How do we handle trouble?"— Presentation transcript:
Trouble can come to anyone at anytime. How do we handle trouble?
Ecclesiastes 9:11-12 “ I again saw under the sun that the race is not to the swift, and the battle is not to the warriors, and neither is bread to the wise, nor wealth to the discerning, nor favor to men of ability; for time and chance overtake them all. Moreover, man does not know his time; like fish caught in a treacherous net, and birds trapped in a snare, so the sons of men are ensnared at an evil time when it suddenly falls on them.”
The Bible affirms that trouble has been man’s lot since the beginning and is as unpredictable as ever. Job 14:1; “Man who is born of woman, is short- lived and full of turmoil.” James 4:13-14“Come now, you who say today or tomorrow, we shall go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit. Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.
What do you do when you feel like your life has vaporized but you’re still breathing? “National” worries have descended on us: 1. Bad economy, high gas prices, political infighting. 2. Storms, tornados, earthquakes, tsunamis, floods, drought, fires.
It even hits closer to home A loved one passes away Your child rebels against God. Oh how that hurts. Your loved one has cancer or some other disease. You have your own health problems. And then, there are the little annoyances that bug us all the time.
Sometimes It Happens So Quickly Just like that - BAM! BAM! BAM! BAM! BAM! Out of nowhere trouble comes that makes your heart hurt and your countenance fall. Add to all that the myriad health problems suffered by so many here, the discouragement for the unfaithfulness of some, the daily concerns of life and family... etc; pretty soon it’s overwhelming! How do we make sense of the insensible?
Remember Who God Is and His Purpose Job is the poster boy for trouble & sorrow. He was confused, sorrowful, frustrated, yet he never wagged an accusing finger at God 1. Job 1:21-22 “And Job said, ‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I shall return there. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away. Blessed be the name of the LORD’. Through all this Job did not sin nor did he blame God.
Why could Job still bless God? Just as physical pain is a motivator, a signal that you need help, So sorrow, grief, and emotional pain is to instigate us to seek Higher Help. Ecclesiastes 7:2-3 “It is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting, Because that is the end of every man, and the living takes it to heart. Sorrow is better than laughter, for when a face is sad a heart may be happy.”
Houses of mourning are not only funeral homes. They are houses where friendships are missed, where relationships are broken, where disease has overwhelmed, where happiness seems thwarted.
The intent of it all is to look to God! Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. We must know that there is a God. Why? Without Him, nothing makes sense, there is no reason for anything.
He has a purpose for you & me! Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” In the seeming randomness of trials, know that God knows, cares, and controls. 1 Peter 5:7 “casting all your anxiety upon Him, because He cares for you.”
Remember What God Has Done In the swirl of life’s storms, it is hard to remember happier times, but that’s when it is MOST important! Psalm 81:7 “You called when in trouble and I rescued you...” Can you remember when this was true for you before and how somehow you got past it?
Psalm 40:1-5 I waited patiently for the LORD; and He inclined to me, and heard my cry. He brought me up out of the pit of destruction, out of the miry clay; and He set my feet upon a rock making my footsteps firm. And He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God; Many will see and fear, and will trust in the LORD. How blessed is the man who has made the LORD his trust, and has not turned to the proud, nor to those who lapse into falsehood.. Many, O LORD my God, are the wonders which Thou hast done, and Thy thoughts toward us; There is none to compare with Thee; If I would declare and speak of them, they would be too numerous to count.
Where Should Our Focus Be? Don’t make the mortal mistake of focusing solely on your trouble. Be prudent about it, try to work with it, but don’t let it poison your perspective. Throughout Ecclesiastes, the frustrated writer returns again & again to simple pleasures that made life pleasant, no matter the outward annoyances. Ecclesiastes 2:24-26; 3:12-14, 22; 5:18; 9:9
Who made all these possible? God! 2. “Precious Memories” reminds of the importance of recalling God’s past goodness. Notice especially vs 3: “As I travel on life’s pathway, know not what the years may hold; As I ponder, hope grows fonder, Precious memories flood my soul.” Even if nothing good ever happens again, God has still demonstrated His love for you, Jesus has still became a man and died in sacrifice for you, and heaven still waits for those who trust Him!
Trust That God Will Help When especially troubling times come, I believe God gives special strength to deal with them Corinthians 10:13 “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it”. 2 Corinthians 1:3 “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort;”
How Do we let God Take Care Of Us? Prayer - Don’t use it as a “last resort!” Bible reading - Love Psalm 139! Worship - Keeps us in perspective (1) Especially singing! (2) Ever notice that when we sing, the cares of this world are softened and nearly forgotten, if but for a few moments. Sometimes He comforts & strengthens through His children. Remember the “One Another” passages? We “rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep” (Rom 12:15) because there is strength in numbers & unity especially in times of trouble.
There is reward for persistence. Never lose sight of the fact that what awaits us is more precious than the sorrows and setbacks of this life. Romans 8:18 “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”
Conclusion Whether it is some national tragedy or a personal crisis, the pain & sorrow is just as intense. But Christians do not sorrow as those who have no hope! James 1:12 “Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.” Have you committed yourself to the Lord’s trust?