So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.
Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are.
In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation. All power to him forever! Amen. (1 Peter 5:6-11 NLT)
There are some powerful lessons for you in these verses.
Among them are:
- God will lift you up in His timing.
- You should give your worries to Him.
- You have an enemy who wants to stop you.
- You are not the only one experiencing difficult times.
Right now, I’d like you to think about the last one: You are not the only one experiencing difficult times.
It’s important to know you aren’t suffering alone. The Bible tells us that believers all over the world are going through the same kinds of hard times. You’re not the only one going through a battle. You’re not the only one who’s walking down the lonely road you’re walking right now.
There is comfort in knowing that.
I have a friend I’ve known for probably three decades. Years ago, by the grace of God, his large and influential church suddenly took off. It’s like someone hit the booster rockets, the influence increased exponentially, and everybody was talking about this church!
Everyone said it was like paradise. It was apparently the perfect church. You’d hear people say: “If only we lived there. We could go to that church.”
Back then, I was in the midst of navigating problems with some staff members. And I had a chance to speak at a conference that this church was hosting.
One day at the conference, the worship pastor said, “Bayless, would you go to lunch with me?” So I went to lunch with the guy, and he started unburdening his heart about all the challenges they had with people in the worship department.
And then another pastor at the church asked me to have lunch, during which he outlined for me all the problems he was facing in his area of the church. Then another pastor caught me in the elevator and said, “Bayless, thank God. I needed to talk to somebody. We’ve got this issue…”
When I left the conference, the thing that encouraged me the most was that they were having problems too. It actually encouraged me because I realized I wasn’t the only one facing problems and challenges. I knew God was helping them and God would help me!
You’re not the only one struggling as you wait for things to get better. You might feel like it, but you aren’t.
That experience taught me an important lesson: Don’t check out of your life while you’re waiting. Continue serving, loving, laughing, and living. Don’t put your life on hold while you wait for the answer to materialize. Be a good husband. Be a good wife. Be a good parent. Be a good employee. Be a good friend.
In his message, “Wisdom in the Waiting,” Bayless’ talks more about this idea of waiting on God and what to do while you wait for His promises to be fulfilled. Watch now, and learn the W-A-I-T acrostic to help you focus on God during difficult periods of waiting.