What can elude us in our present conflict/s is the simplicity of God’s love for us and His ability to be faithful in providing for us when all resources seem exhausted. Somehow we have the propensity to confuse desire with need. This sentiment can be a stronger inclination in our hearts when we have all we need but not all we desire. There is a notable difference between needing water and wanting sweetened iced tea. It is obvious when someone needs food for nourishment and when they desire a piece of cake to satisfy a sweet-tooth. You see, God always gives us what we need first before blessing us with extras that our hearts may covet. Sometimes God will restrain His blessing from our heart’s desire to provide needed trials that lead us into a right relationship with Him.
What I have learned by walking through both good and bad circumstances is that God wants my heart to adapt to His will while in them. Our circumstances, whether good or bad, should always lead us to the Throne of Grace where we boldly come and place our lives in His hands. He changes us through our revolving circumstances by revealing through faithfulness that He never changes His mind concerning us. He will not merely turn our circumstances one way or the other so we will change, but will keep allowing us to go through different types of circumstance till we understand that we are rooted and grounded in His unchanging love for us. Our hope in God will endure past every event in our earthly lives. Think about the trees that are always rooted and grounded in the earth through all four seasons. Though we see physical changes to the trees in response to the seasons; the roots, trunk, and branches stay firmly planted — drawing life from the ground and growing accordingly.
John the Baptist was in prison as a righteous man. In a moment of doubt, he sent messengers to ask Jesus whether He was the “Expected One” or if they should look for another (Matthew 11:2+3 & Luke 7:19-30). Jesus sent the messengers back to John in prison to give him a message of hope;
Matthew 11:4–6 (NKJV) – “Go and tell John the things which you hear and see: The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them. And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”
John had to receive this message and accept it in his grave circumstances. No doubt Jesus could have changed John’s circumstances for good. He could have sent an angel to break john’s chains and walk him out of the dark prison cell. He could have placed benevolent thoughts in the mind of Herod Antipas to release John and restore him to ministry. Jesus did none of these things to help John escape certain death, but instead eulogized him as being the greatest of men born among women! John himself bore witness that Jesus had to increase and he had to decrease (John 3:30). The message of hope came to John in a dire and seemingly hopeless situation. He had to stay grounded in the Truth of God even though he was facing a humiliating death. He received at that moment what he needed, not necessarily what he desired. I like to think that John was encouraged and strengthened by the simple words of Jesus and met his death with confidence in God’s good plan.
If there is fear in your heart or anxiety about the future of your earthly relationships, finances, ministry/s, health; even your very life — remember that God is with you for good and not evil. If He wants you rich, you will be rich. If He wants you poor, you will be poor. If He wants you sick, you will continue to be sick. If He wants you out of the picture in ministry or out of the spotlight in human relations — then it will be so. The thing to always remind yourself of is that your circumstances do not have to change for you to receive the message of hope God has already sent. This hope has a future promissory manifestation of Truth that far exceeds anything we could ask for or think of for ourselves (Ephesians 3:20). You can still have confidence in those endearing words of Paul the Apostle in Romans 8:28-30;
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.