I've been thinking alot about the hard times in our lives. It all started when a little boy in my Sunday School class told me that Satan killed the baby in his Mom's belly. The child's mother had just recently miscarried. This shocked me! Of course, I replied what instantly came to mind. "Oh no! Satan didn't kill that baby,, that baby is with Jesus now in a WONDERFUL place!!" I've thought and thought about this. What are we teaching our children through hard times?
I've also heard so often that if we make a decision for the Lord, the devil will do things to us. "I decided to obey in this area and attacks came into my life." "I decided to do this and my car broke down." "I decided to obey and do this and my child got sick." If I hadn't decided to obey the Lord, would the trial still have come? If we keep saying this, especially to our children, doesn't that make serving our loving Savior like a "bad" decision? If we obey, does that bring bad things into my life? Why would you want to obey then? Who is more powerful? It most certainly seems to make the devil seem awfully powerful.
It's been so nice to be chatting about all this with Mark. I'm so thankful for a man I respect and know I can trust his answer to my questions. I've asked him what he's thought about this too. He said, "It seems the devil is given more credit for our circumstance and NOT the agenda he's doing in the world." In other words, we blame the devil for the bad things but as Christians, we sometimes go along with Satan's agenda in the world we live.
Sometimes the trial or seemingly "bad" things are just the consequences of bad choices we've made in the past. Or maybe it's a trial to draw us close to our loving Savior.
The hard times in my life (and I've had very minor ones compared to many people I know) are the times I've felt closest to my Lord and have grown the most in the Word.
James 1:2-4 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
Deuteronomy 8:5-6 Thou shalt also consider in thine heart that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the LORD thy God chasten thee. Therefore thou shalt keep the commandments of the LORD thy God, to walk in his ways, and to fear him.
Psalms 94:12 Blessed is the man whom thou chastenest, O LORD, and teachest him out of thy law.
There are sooo many verses about the Lord's chastening and more about the "hard times" being from the Lord rather than the devil. What a great study to do.
I know I certainly don't have all the answers but I really think we as believers need to guard all our words and make sure they match up to Scripture, especially as we have young impressionable minds listening to our words. The Christain life is a joyful life knowing we have eternity with our Savior!