How many times has life been confusing for you? One does not need to live very long to have encountered or known someone who has encountered a confusing time in life. The cool weather this week is certainly a bit of a change, but we are talking here about genuine conundrums—those places in life when it seems we are at our wits end and cannot make sense of the circumstances of our lives. Sometimes we call those places ‘dead ends.’
There are two Christian truths that speak to us in those times of our lives. The first is found in the old hymn, “He leadeth me.” The lyrics say, “He leadeth me, O blessed thought! O words with heav’nly comfort fraught! Whate’er I do, where’er I be , Still ’tis God’s hand that leadeth me.” Our first comfort as followers of Jesus Christ is that God has a hand in leading our lives. When we reach dead ends or impasses in life, we can have the confidence that God leads us and provides guidance for us. The God who brought Jesus from the grave is a God who wants to be personally involved in our lives and can bring goodness even to difficult situations!
The second great truth is that those who trust in Christ’s work in our lives is that struggles can have meaning. We do not need to suffer meaninglessly. James tells us in his brief letter that difficulties and trials can be tools in our lives for the increase in our faith. He actually tells the recipients of his letter to rejoice when they encounter problems because they actually can be used by God to strengthen our faith.
So when we reach dead ends or confusing times our promise is two-fold; we can trust that God will lead and also know that He can work through difficulties to make our lives stronger. That should fill us with hope!
(This blog published in the Naples Daily News on 3-8-13)