In the movie, Tomorrow Land, there is a scene that tells the story of two battling wolves. One is said to be the wolf of darkness and despair and the other is the wolf of light and hope. The question is then presented – which wolf wins? The answer? The one we feed. Although, this was not referencing a Christian worldview, it does highlight a powerful truth. What we choose to focus on is typically what we get. Therefore, as believers in Jesus Christ, when a crisis comes our way, how we choose to see it will greatly determine its outcome in our life:
Delays: We don’t like waiting, especially when it involves hardship. We want our pain gone as quickly as possible. However, as we know, sometimes God has us wait on His deliverance and sometimes, it appears our deliverance never comes. Are these miseries in life simply random acts of cruelty without purpose, or are they allowed by a loving God for greater purposes we may not understand at the time? We will feel pain, but when we choose to believe God is never out-of-control and can work all things together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purposes, then we can trust in His outcomes (Habakkuk 2:3).
Despairs: When we lose hope, darkness overtakes us and frankly, that’s exactly where Satan would love to keep us. For we may believe in Christ, but if he can keep us off the battlefield with discouragement and despair, our impact for the Kingdom is reduced. However, when we live out our faith, we can expect to get hit and hurt, but through Christ we receive hope, encouragement, strength and endurance to keep fighting the good fight (Habakkuk 3:17).
Dead-Ends: There will be times the battle will seem lost. Like in the movies when the hero seems defeated by the opposition, this is the climax that sets the stage for the hero to overcome overwhelming odds in order to save the day. Isn’t this just like Jesus? Evil may seem to be winning, but Jesus cannot be defeated and will always overcome and has overcome. The question is, will we continue to believe this during our darkest hours, or allow ourselves to be sidelined by the opposition (Jeremiah 12:5)?
Application: “Like A Rock!” – Mark 5:36
The Bible provides numerous examples of people, just like us, who faced overwhelming hardships and challenges. Did they face delays, despairs and seemingly dead-ends? Absolutely. Did they struggle with doubts, worries, fears and discouragements? Absolutely. Did God use all these things to strengthen their faith, character and impact – absolutely. Therefore, He will do the same for us, but we mustn’t focus on the defeats, but the victory we already have in Christ and then trust Him to have our back as He helps forge our faith to be solid as a rock!