Treasured Answers- Focusing on God’s Promises
By Steph Nickel
How do you react when life hits you hard? Stephanie encourages us to focus on God’s promises and look at things from His perspective rather than our own.
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I was going to call today’s devotional “Dumb Questions” but chose, instead, to call it “Treasured Answers.”
I mentioned last time that we have to be careful about spending too much time “in our head.” I have a tendency to obsess, like a dog with a bone. Now if that was holding onto the promises of God despite my circumstances, that would be a good thing. But when it comes to questioning those things that the Lord has made clear in His Word, that’s not so good.
When we do that, we often ask dumb questions. We try so hard to look at it from every angle that we miss what’s right in front of us.
Today I want to touch on some of God’s promises, some of the clear statements He makes in the Scriptures. But first, we have to accept the fact that God’s promises are for God’s children. And how do we become a child of God?
John 1:9-12 says, “The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God”
Who is the true light?
In John 8:12, Jesus says this: “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life”
We must accept that we are sinners and that Jesus paid the price for our sin by dying on the cross. We must also accept the fact that He rose victorious over sin and death and offers victory to His followers.
Ephesians 2:1-10 is one amazing passage!
“And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them”
Above The Circumstances
There is a wealth of information in this passage and we could dwell on it for days, but I wanted to point out an amazing truth that has the potential to change our perspective on all of life. In verse six it says that we are raised up with him and seated with him in heavenly places.
Did you notice the tense of the verbs? Raised. Seated. It isn’t only something that’s going to happen after we die. From God’s perspective, it’s already a reality. That totally blows me away.
Will we still deal with the sinful behaviour of others—and ourselves? We will.
Will life always go as we want it to? Highly unlikely.
Will we avoid natural disasters and violence? There are many believers who know all too well that this is not the case.
But, from God’s perspective, we are already seated far above these circumstances.
I once heard of a believer who asked another, “How are you?” When the man responded, “I’m fine under the circumstances,” the first man asked what he was doing under the circumstances.
While this may sound trite and frivolous in the face of what some of you’re going through, it is a good reminder to hold onto God’s promises, to ask for His perspective, and to trust the truth of Ephesians 2:6.
Look To Him For Answers
Can we learn to rejoice in the face of heartache? Shine in the midst of darkness? Experience victory despite seeming defeat? Yes, yes, and yes.
It’s okay to ask questions and enlist God’s help to see things from our seat in heavenly places.
Recently, when I was dealing with depression, my perspective was off. I was asking “dumb” questions, questions to which I already knew the answers. God didn’t shame me for my struggles, but He did use them to remind me to pray for those who are facing heavy burdens. He also reminded me to look to Him for treasured answers, answers that will get me through my most difficult times of questioning.
Will you look to Him for the answers—and believe them even when they seem unbelievable from a human perspective?
Steph Beth Nickel is a freelance writer and editor. She is the coauthor of Paralympian Deb Willows’ award-winning memoir, Living Beyond My Circumstances, published by Castle Quay Books.
Steph is a member of InScribe Christian Writers’ Fellowship and The Word Guild. She and her husband of over 30 years live in Southwestern Ontario, Canada.
Steph’s goal is to nurture and inspire. She blogs at Steph Nickel’s Eclectic Interests. She also guest posts regularly on the topics of Christian living, writing, and fitness. You can visit her website, stephbethnickel.com, to learn more about her.
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