Good day, friends. I truly hope it is a good day for you. We've been talking here in recent days about handling our personal struggles, those battles and tough situations we all have to face pretty much on our own. They are "assigned to us" and, while we may find solace and even wisdom from others in the midst of those storms, we ultimately have to walk through them alone. And often, all alone.
Except for the companionship of Jesus, of course.
He has been so faithful to walk through my own crises with me. I know many of you can give testimony to the same. Jesus is our ever present help in time of trouble.
And that's why it's so important to hammer out the concept I'd like to talk about today:
When I'm walking through an intensely personal struggle, I tend to try to work things out on my own. I stew over it, talk it out loud, journal about it, and plot out my plans. And then things get even worse. I say things and go places and do things and pick up the phone and write emails and give "looks." You know what I mean, right?
I try to work the thing out.
But in the simple story of Jesus' initial contact with Simon (later called Peter) and his brother Andrew, I come across a principle that reminds me what I really need to do as I experience the ups and downs of my personal struggle:
And Simon answered and said, "Master, we have worked hard all night and caught nothing, but at Your word I will let down the nets."
Where this translation reads "but at Your word" others say "because you said so" or "nevertheless."
Simon, the experienced fisherman who knew his trade well, relinquished his authority over his own actions and acquiesced to Jesus, who was a carpenter from Nazareth.
Today we know that Jesus is much more than a worker of wood. He is the sovereign, omnipotent, omniscient, loving God. He knows what He's doing, and everything He does, He does with love and intent. He wants to be deeply involved in our lives, and He has a master plan. He can direct us through every step of our personal struggle, if we allow Him to, and give us sweet victory in the end.
Have you "worked hard" to get to the other side of your personal struggle? Maybe it's time to do whatever it is that Jesus has clearly whispered into your heart to do, even if it doesn't sound logical or easy.
Nevertheless, because You say so, I will:
- keep my mouth closed
- be gracious
- submit to my husband
- trust You
- wait on You
- end the relationship
- take the first step
- say "yes"
- let go
- walk away
What is Jesus calling you to do that you have hesitated to do because it just doesn't make sense or feel right? Say the word "nevertheless." Say it again. And then do what the Master has asked.
PS - I'm trying to do the same today. I've already messed up once today. I blew it. I did what I wanted instead of what Jesus clearly told me to do. But I'm going to pick up my nets, sort them out and try again...to let them out at His bidding.
Labels: 2014 Daily Devotional, obedience, personal struggles, struggles