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Monday, June 5, 2017

Knocked Down BUT Not Out

"We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair." 2 Corinthians 4:8–9

If we stare at our giants too much, the fear of them will overtake us. We have to keep our eyes on the prize, not the pain. The Apostle Paul sums up our existence here on earth in realistic terms ~ We are in a pressure cooker! The challenges of life and the accompanying stress are constant companions, but, while we share the same troubles that the world has, thank God, we can and will overcome! Paul said, "We are pressed on all sides, but not crushed!"

As a Christian, there are three things that are certain:
1. WE WILL HAVE TROUBLE! The Bible promised it, "Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble." Job 14:1. The Psalmist promised it, "Seventy years are given to us! Some even live to eighty. But even the best years are filled with pain and trouble; soon they disappear..." Psalm 90:10. Jesus promised it! John 16:33, "In the world ye shall have tribulation…"

We're going to have trouble, everybody has trouble ~ it's something everybody has that nobody else wants! Some of us have just come through troubles and others are in trouble right now yet some are headed for trouble! BUT...

2. GOD WILL DELIVER US FROM TROUBLE! We know this because Psalm 91:3 says , "Surely, He shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler," Who is the fowler? The devil! And he is always trying to fowl things up! He wants to fowl up the plans God has for our life, our family, our health! But, thank God, we have the promise, "SURELY, HE SHALL DELIVER THEE FROM TROUBLE!" The Psalmist said we will soon be delivered from our troubles, "Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but God delivered him out of them all!" Psalm 34:19. While Jesus said, "In the world, ye shall have tribulation," He didn't stop there! He said, "But be of good cheer, I have overcome the world!" John 16:33. And, thank God we will too!

We may be pressed on all sides, but we will not be crushed! No matter what we're going through just remember, YOU ARE GOING THROUGH! Yes, surely, we'll have trouble and surely, God will deliver us from trouble!

3. WE'LL COME OUT OF YOUR TROUBLES BETTER THAN BEFORE! Just ask Job! You can get depressed reading about all his troubles, but listen to the rest of the story…Job 42:10,12 The Bible says, "So the Lord blessed the later end of Job more than his beginning!" and boy was he a blessed man in the beginning! Just ask Brother Joseph! He was forsaken and falsely accused by family and friends. But, he kept the right attitude. He kept the right perspective when he told his brothers, in Genesis 50:20, "As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good!" The Apostle Paul, in the key verse, said it right, "We are pressed on all sides but not crushed!" Surely, we' too will come out of our troubles better than before! We may get knocked down by troubles, but, thank God WE DON'T GET KNOCKED OUT!

Many of us are going through troubled times. In the key scripture, Paul explains how they were pressed on every side and troubled and oppressed in every way ~ they could see no way out, but they refused to give up. He made his mind up that no matter what happened, he was going to finish his course. Paul explained that they did not get discouraged because they looked not at the things they could see but to the things they could not see.

If we stare at our problems too much, think and talk about them too much, they are likely to defeat us. Glance at your problems but stare at Jesus. All things are possible with God! Victory is coming!

Lord, if Paul could endure through all the adversity he faced, by Your grace I can make it through whatever I face. Help me to see beyond the problems to You. Amen.

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