I’ve been receiving some great newsletters this month that have been very encouraging in how to intentionally face the days ahead to make 2011 a spiritually strong year. In the coming weeks I’d like to share five encouragements that I received from Pastor Charles Stanley of In Touch Ministries.
The first is this:
“The first thing to recognize is that your willingness to submit to the Lord depends on what you believe about Him. Do you accept the fact that God is in control of all things? Many find this basic principle a difficult hurdle to overcome because of the troubles they face and the injustices they see in the world. In fact, you may be experiencing inexplicably challenging circumstances and not understand why the Father has allowed them. But if you trust God is sovereign and all-powerful, then you will have faith that He will cause 'all things to work together for good to those who love' Him (Romans 8:28).” Charles Stanley
The words that stand out for me are the words in the very last line: for those that love HIM. So often we focus on God’s love for us that we might overlook our need to love Him, even in times when it feels as though He is far away. Acts 17:26-27 assures us that “he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us.”
Since God determined the times set for us, He is with us in those times, be they good or bad. In every situation let us love Him and thank Him that He is never far from each one of us.
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:18