Monday, April 5, 2010
Circumstantial or steadfast?
Currently I'm going through a time of transition that is probably the most challenging and difficult time I've ever experienced in my life. And I've had some challenges!
In spite of the difficulty, the one area of my life that remains strong is my personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Throughout the challenges, I'm fully aware of God's constant love and care for me. Because of this, I've had several people ask me how I can be so calm in the middle of such a huge "storm" of life.
Circumstances have changed, God hasn't.
Regardless of the difficulties seemingly constantly hurled my way, God remains constant. He is always there, always caring, always walking through every challenge with me. His faithfulness motivates steadfastness from me. And my relationship with Christ is an eternal one, not a circumstantial one.
Many of the people I've worked with as both a minister and counselor struggle with having a circumstantial relationship with God. They love and appreciate Him when things are comfortable. When things get tough, they stress out and their faith turns to doubt. When ease becomes challenge, their faith turns to fear. When abundance becomes need, they blame God for letting them get into that situation.
The key these people are missing is this vital piece of information: "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever" (Hebrews 13:8).
When relationships, jobs, health, finances, or any aspect of life becomes difficult, even painful, it is circumstances that have changed, not God! God remains the same. He remains faithful to us. His love remains constant. His commitment to us is the same. So doubting, blaming, becoming angry with, or even turning from God just because circumstances have changed is beyond silly, it's actually selfish. God hasn't promised a life of ease, He's promised a life of love ... that He would love and lead us through every step in this life.
Remembering that Jesus Christ never changes enables you to just smile and laugh with God when something new goes wrong or becomes hard. Why? Because you know no matter what the new difficulty is, God will be there with His perfect love, all-encompassing care, perfect knowledge and unmatchable power to see you through yet another trial.
Changing circumstances can be hard, painful, even dreadful. That, friends, is a part of life lived in a broken world. But changing circumstances don't have to have any negative affect on your relationship with Jesus Christ. If anything, they should enhance it as you demonstrate steadfastness while God demonstrates His faithfulness.
Is your relationship with Jesus Christ a circumstantial one, or a steadfast one?