Going through Trials

Whether you are a Christian or not, you WILL go through trials. The moment we rejected God and chose Satan in the Garden of Eden; we signed up for trials and misfortunes. There is no getting out of it nor avoiding or sidestepping it: Satan makes sure of that. We are faced with these struggles whether we are directly responsible through our actions or not. The book of James in the New Testament tells us how to deal with these trials:

  • Embrace your trials because God will bless you if you don’t give up, and endure to the end
  • The crown of life is eternal life with God after this life is over
  • All those who continue to love God through their trials and do not give up will receive this gift of life

When we go through struggles and challenges in life we like to blame someone for this even when it is directly our own fault. More often than not the world likes to blame God. James tells us here to stop blaming God for our shortcomings and for the bad things that happen to us.

James 1:13
Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempts he any man:

I have heard Christians say that because they didn’t pay their tithes, God made something bad happen to them and they had to pay all their money to fix the problem, so God was punishing them for not paying their tithes! Or God made them get sick as a punishment for something they had done wrong. Or when marriages fail; if God didn’t want them to get married He should have stopped them…the list of accusations go on and on! Somehow, we manage very well to shift blame onto God. But the book of James tells us that we of our own free will, lust after things. We have a great desire to have what we want regardless of the cost which is sin; and when conceived in our hearts it brings forth sin!

God is life, He does not sin and is not sin, so He cannot give us the fruits of sin. Sin is from darkness (Satan), and God is the “Father of Lights,” so His gifts are always good and perfect. God gives life! He will never stop being who He is, to consult Satan for some inspiration on how to punish us and make our lives a misery; then after He has inflicted pain on us He goes back to being a loving God! He will never do that. God never changes and never deviates from being who He is, and James confirms this in the following verse:

James 1:17
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

There are no shades, shadows, darkness or variations in God, He remains the same always. The Book of Malachi in the Old Testament 3:6 confirms this: For I am the Lord, I change not;

When we follow our desires, and fall foul of life, the Lord does not interfere in our choices. He has given us free will. If He didn’t step in to prevent Adam and Eve from disobeying Him, He won’t step in now to force us to do His will. You cannot tell someone they love you, they have to tell you themselves and they have to show it through their actions. No one who values the love of another will try to force that person to love them, it has to be freely given or it means nothing. So, God will not make bad things happen to us so that we will chose Him, He allows us to make our own choices.

But God’s grace is so amazing that when we make the wrong choices and get ourselves tangled up in the thicket or when life throws us a curve ball; we can always go to Him and ask Him to help us out of it. Unfortunately we are so impatient that if He doesn’t respond as quickly as we would like, we go off and get ourselves caught up even deeper in the thicket.

The message from James, is to not blame God for the situations we find ourselves in, but instead to go to Him in prayer and tell Him all about it. Ask Him to help and guide you out of the situation. Definitely do not give up when you are going through trials and don’t get so desperate that you do things to make the situation worse. Once God is in that situation with you He will bring you out of it while using it to strengthen you; ready for the next one… yes it’s a lifelong cycle!

How do I deal with betrayal?

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Matthew 26:2
 Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified


Where do I even start on the subject of betrayal? It’s such a huge topic and so many of us have experienced it. So, how did you deal with it, when the person(s) you loved, cared for and trusted; your friend and confidant betrayed you? Are you healed from the attack; because that’s what it is, an attack! For me when I am dealing with the aftermath of an attack of the enemy, my first port of call is the one person who can actually help me; Jesus! And in understanding the very debilitating condition of this attack we examine how Jesus dealt with it.  How did He deal with the aftermath of His betrayal, this attack direct from the enemy channelled through one of His closest confidant? 

Betrayal as defined by Meriam Webster is to give information about (a person, group, country, etc.) to an enemy; to hurt (someone who trusts you, such as a friend or relative) by not giving help or by doing something morally wrong; and we can all agree that this sums up Judas Iscariot perfectly. He was one of Jesus’ twelve disciples who handed Jesus over to His enemies for thirty pieces of silver; to be killed. 

Luke 22:3-6
Then entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve. And he went his way, and communed with the chief priests and captains, how he might betray Him unto them. And they were glad, and covenanted to give him money. And he promised, and sought opportunity to betray him unto them in the absence of the multitude. 

The components of betrayal:

  • Satan
  • Close friend/confidant
  • An immoral plan
  • The reward
  • Unwavering determination to hurt someone who trusts and cares about you 

The devil is always in the detail. Judas made a pact with the enemies of Jesus who sought to kill Him and was waiting for the perfect time to accomplish his plan. There is no special DNA for this type of person who could betray a friend; it is determined by many variables. The circumstances, the type of relationship between the players, envy, selfishness, greed, their mind-set and beliefs; the list goes on. Who really knows why people do this… sin! 

What we need to do is learn how to deal with it, by understanding How the Lord Jesus Himself dealt with it. So, He knew what was going to happen long before it hit and did it hurt Him in His heart? Yes of course it did! Did He rant and curse, swear to get even, rile the other eleven disciples to take sides with Him and against Judas? No! He left Judas to his own devices, because He knew that He had to go through certain things to fulfil His destiny, and so do we. 

John 18:2-4
And Judas also, which betrayed him, knew the place: for Jesus ofttimes resorted thither with his disciples. Judas then, having received a band of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons. Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon him, went forth, and said unto them, Whom seek ye? 

Jesus remained CALM, trusted God to take Him through and waited patiently for someone He loved and trusted, to bring an army against Him, brandishing weapons and to take Him to His death. Never did He challenge the plan of God for His life. Never did He lash out at Judas or anyone else. He didn’t seek revenge, He didn’t even stop speaking to Judas. Matthew 26 tells us that Jesus made it known to the disciples that He would be betrayed by one of them and confirmed to Judas that it was Him. He then continued to keep the Passover with all of them, including Judas. He didn’t send him away and eat with the other eleven, He ate with them all.

When we come to the Lord we know we have to go through many trials to become spiritually mature. How we deal with these trials and tribulations are determined by our level of maturity.  We cannot avoid them if we are to fulfil our destiny in Christ.

What to do:

  • Never react as you would before you came to Christ.
  • You are a new creation in Him now so act the way He would.
  • Stay calm in all situations.
  • Assess the situation and take it with your wounded heart to the Lord.
  • Close your door and pour it all out to Him, as often as is necessary.
  • Exercise self-control when dealing with the betrayer.
  • Ask God to heal you and spend a lot of time with Him while He works in you.
  • Don’t rush it!
  • Never seek revenge.
  • Go through the process and come out the other side, stronger than before!

Stay blessed!