The true test of our faith and trust in God comes when we are faced with situations and circumstances that are beyond our ability to control. They may be health issues, financial anxiety, the inability to be social or work within relationships, emotional depression and stress, or the death of a loved one. While some of these issues begin as little problems and grow into overwhelming challenges, others can be unexpected attacks that come out of left field and knock us down. Regardless, many Christians impulsively turn to the world for help and run from God.
We live in a world that is overflowing in professional advice, therapy and solutions, and these are all designed to help us overcome our personal weaknesses and stresses and turn us into strong, independent individuals. The purpose is to build up our self-esteem so we are able to handle the conflicts of life as mature and self-confident human beings. Although their intentions seem good, the truth is that these are all implemented by this world to make us self-reliant and to separate us from our dependency on God.
We don’t need to look far to realize that services for most of our trials are bill-boarded everywhere and supported by our doctors, our friends and family, our work environment and even our church. We are encouraged – if not pushed – to seek out professional help for all of life’s issues. So, it’s not surprising that when problems come at us, we automatically turn to the world.
However, the world is not where Christians should go for help. God is our help in times of trouble.
“The Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble.” … Psalm 9:9
“I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.” … Psalm 121:1
We need to reprogram our thoughts and take our problems to God first and not to the world first. We need to become as little children before our Heavenly Father and take our problems to Him.
We are children of God, and as children we need to learn how to become humble before Him and talk to Him and trust Him just like an earthly child would to an earthly father. God wants to help us with everything in our lives, but we have to be willing to let Him. Jesus told us clearly to give Him our problems because He will work them out for us, to His glory, and for our benefit.
“Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you.” … 1 Peter 5:7
If, as parents, we saw that one of our own children were in trouble we would step in and want to help right away. But if that child has been programmed in this world to work out his or her own answer, or has been brainwashed by the schools or by society to seek professional help, we may have to just stand by the side and watch. It might hurt, especially when we see that their choice of help was a mistake, but they won’t heed to our advice or to our help until they are ready to accept it, so we have to just wait. And so, our Heavenly Father waits for us to come to Him.
“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” … 2 Chronicles 7:14
This attitude of self-reliance, however, is in each of us when we follow the world and that’s because the leader of this world – the devil – wants us to do everything and anything apart from God. It’s why he fell in the first place and it’s why his goal in life is to try to destroy anyone who wants to follow God and depend on Him.
However, Christians have been redeemed from this world; we are no longer under the devil’s control and we are not ruled by the sinful nature that we once had. We belong to God. He is our Lord [1 Corinthians 8:6], our King [1 Timothy 6:14-15], our Healer [Isaiah 53:5], our Counsellor [Isaiah 9:6] and our Friend [Proverbs 18:24].
When we are faced with problems we need run TO God, not away from Him. He’s the only One who loves us enough to die for us, and He’s the only One who has defeated the devil that is coming against us. While we still suffer from living in this world and dealing with its trials, Jesus has already won over all of them.
“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” … John 16:33
God does not need us to be strong within ourselves; He needs us to be weak and humble and totally dependent on Him because only then will we step away from the problem in humility and let Him take over. Only then during our weakness – our inability to cope with the trial – can we whole heartedly and honestly turn to Jesus for help. And only then are we given the strength and wisdom and means to overcome.
“9 And He said unto me, ‘My grace is sufficient for thee, for my strength is made perfect in weakness.’ Most gladly, therefore, will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.” … 2 Corinthians 12:9-10
Christians need to get into the Bible and study it and learn the scriptures and understand who God is and experience the immeasurable love that He has for those who love Him. We need to give all of our problems to Him because He CAN and He WILL work with us through them. We must never run from the One who loves us so much that He wilfully died on the cross to save us. There is no love found anywhere in this world that will ever come remotely close to the love that God has for His children, and there is no victory possible over the things that come against us in this world than what Jesus has already won for us.
We need to turn to Jesus and trust Him with our problems before we give them to the world and bring insult to the salvation that Jesus gave us at the cross when He redeemed us out of the world. Therefore, the world should never come before our faith and trust in Jesus. When we have problems, we need to run from the world and into His saving arms.
“But I will sing of thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of thy mercy in the morning: for thou hast been my defence and refuge in the day of my trouble.” … Psalm 59:16