Afflictions and Tribulations
April 28, 2019
Have you ever asked… Why me God? Has He ever responded… Why not you?
Usually we ask this during an affliction or tribulation… a death in the family… financial problems… marriage problems…sickness… etc.
Our human nature is to seek comfort and security and we don’t want to leave that zone…nobody enjoys afflictions and tribulations. Jesus tells us in John 16:33 In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, for I have overcome the world.
1 Peter 4:12
Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing has happened to you
We respond to affliction and tribulation by asking God to take it away…
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”
We all have a calling on our life…we are to work in the calling that God gives us…it is not something that you can do on your own… if you try you will make a mess of it. Just trust God to lead you… if He has made you passionate about something work on it. According to scripture we can expect God to work on our behalf if we love Him and are abided in Him.
God has gifted every single believer with something for His Kingdom… For something for His purpose. Focus on things that you can do well, that way you can be effective in the ministry that He has called you for. What God has gifted you in you have to sharpen it so that you will be able to be used by God.
Nobody wants to hear this but afflictions and tribulations are never bad. Most of the time they are ordained and they can bring us closer to God, however our flesh seeks comfort…security and safety.
In order for God to use you for the purpose that He called for you…you have to “summit” to His process of shaping… you have to be willing for the potter to shape you into the vessel… He is the potter…you are the clay… you have to be willing to let the sculpture knock off the rough edges so that you will be able to be used
Afflictions deliver us from our pride…. In 2 Corinthians 12:7 “And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.”
Afflictions will keep us focused on God… sometimes the comforts of this world will keep us from focusing on God. People will often draw close to God when they are in great despite need… but in times of prosperity they are not there.
Afflictions should drive us to God’s word Psalms 119:71 “It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes
God will use afflictions to pull us out of our comfort zone and into His calling
5 All the descendants of Jacob were seventy persons; Joseph was already in Egypt.
6 Then Joseph died, and all his brothers and all that generation. 7 But the people of Israel were fruitful and increased greatly; they multiplied and grew exceedingly strong, so that the land was filled with them.
8 Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who did not know Joseph. 9 And he said to his people, "Behold, the people of Israel are too many and too mighty for us. 10 Come, let us deal shrewdly with them, lest they multiply, and, if war breaks out, they join our enemies and fight against us and escape from the land." 11 Therefore they set taskmasters over them to afflict them with heavy burdens. They built for Pharaoh store cities, Pithom and Raamses. 12 But the more they were oppressed, the more they multiplied and the more they spread abroad. And the Egyptians were in dread of the people of Israel. 13 So they ruthlessly made the people of Israel work as slaves
14 and made their lives bitter with hard service, in mortar and brick, and in all kinds of work in the field. In all their work they ruthlessly made them work as slaves. 15 Then the king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other Puah, 16 "When you serve as midwife to the Hebrew women and see them on the birthstool, if it is a son, you shall kill him, but if it is a daughter, she shall live." 17 But the midwives feared God and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but let the male children live. 18 So the king of Egypt called the midwives and said to them, "Why have you done this, and let the male children live?" 19 The midwives said to Pharaoh, "Because the Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women, for they are vigorous and give birth before the midwife comes to them." 20 So God dealt well with the midwives. And the people multiplied and grew very strong. 21 And because the midwives feared God, he gave them families. 22 Then Pharaoh commanded all his people, "Every son that is born to the Hebrew you shall cast into the Nile, but you shall let every daughter live."
God will always accomplish what He is ordained to do. If He has given you a promise He will see them through.
Joseph was 13 years in affliction as a slave…a servant…in prison for something that he did not do… but he became 2nd in command in all of Egypt.
Hebrews 13:21 “Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”
He will place us in situations and experiences where we will be prepared for His purpose.
Before David was king he was a servant… he played the harp for the king…
1. Comforts can keep us from Gods calling
2. Do not be careless with your calling
3. What is holding you back? What is keeping you from doing what God called you to do?
Walking by faith is not having all of the details…If you walk by what you can see it is not faith…Faith goes beyond your certainly.
Mark 2:5 When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, "Son, your sins are forgiven you."
Doubt always blocks blessings… childlike faith is what is required to move mountains.
Psalms 37:5 Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass.
1. Where are you standing? Are you standing in comfort or calling?
2. What is at stake if you choose comfort over calling?
3. What are you going to do about it?