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Overcoming Adversity

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“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (Jas. 1:2-4).

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Adversity is part of the Christian life. Jesus warned His disciples before His death, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).

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How do we experience His peace in the midst of trouble? How do we persevere in order to come out the other side “mature and complete, not lacking anything”? Let’s look at it in terms of past, present, and future:

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Remember God’s faithfulness. When God held back the Jordan River so the Israelites could cross into the Promised Land, He told Joshua to build a memorial to remind them of God’s provision (Josh. 4:1-8). We also should keep a record of how God has provided for us in the past so we can look back during times when we can’t see Him working. He is faithful.

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Trust in His presence. Even if we don’t feel it, we can rely on His presence in the midst of our pain. The Psalmist writes, “If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast” (Ps. 139:8-10). And God Himself said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you” (Heb. 13:5). He is always with us.

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Hold on to hope. “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, where our forerunner, Jesus, has entered on our behalf” (Heb. 6:19-20). Jesus entered the Holy of Holies for us, but when He died, the curtain separating God from His people was torn in two (Matt. 27:51). This gives us an anchor to hold onto, knowing that Jesus has paid the price for our sins and our eternity is secure. He keeps His promises.

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When life doesn’t turn out the way you imagined, or people who were supposed to be in your corner disappoint you, or God doesn’t answer your prayers the way you thought He should, look to the past for His faithfulness, the present for His presence and the future for His promises.

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Just Between Us (JBU) has compiled some articles to help you face whatever difficulties you’re experiencing today. We hope you’ll find comfort in stories of other Christians who’ve lived through adversity and seen God’s faithfulness. Ultimately, we pray you’ll take whatever is on your heart to the Lord, knowing He hears you, He is with you, and He will carry you through. 

2021 Sumemr Ad