Christians are a victorious people. Romans 8 makes that clear for us. But sometimes the reality is we don’t feel very victorious. I can personally attest to this. Recently I had breakfast with two godly men who are not only friends of mine, but beloved brothers in the Lord. They were graciously sharing their time with me and offering me counsel as I am in a period of discerning the Lord’s will and direction for my life in the midst of some great personal challenges. At one point during the conversation one of these men looked me in the eyes and said – “your current condition is not your conclusion.” This, he went on to share with me, was the title of a sermon he had delivered a few weeks earlier. The message was based on the text of 2 Kings 20:1-3 when King Hezekiah had become “…sick… at the point of death…”(vs. 1). He was subsequently notified by the prophet Isaiah that he should get his affairs in order because he was going to die (vs. 2). Rather than going to see doctors or going into a frenzied panic about his prescribed condition, Scripture says King Hezekiah, after receiving this news, “…turned his face to the wall…”(vs. 2) and prayed to the God of Heaven to address his condition. As a result of his prayer, God moved and in the end God added 15 years on to Hezekiah’s life span. So though his current condition at the time he was diagnosed looked bleak, God turned it around and changed what the apparent conclusion of his story was. So…what is the encouragement for us today? It is that our current condition does not necessarily dictate our final conclusion.
Now I am sure some are saying – Well, what about those who get bad news or are in a bad situation, pray to the God of Heaven for a turn around, but it doesn’t happen as it did for Hezekiah?
Say someone prays for healing and the cancer diagnosis gets worse? Or they pray for the marriage to be reconciled and they still end up in divorce court? Or they pray for their children to return home and they still have not shown back up? Then what? Does this mean that they didn’t pray hard enough? Or that God did not hear their prayer? Or that they are not victorious?
I’m so glad you asked! And I plan to address these questions in Part 2 of this post…so stay tuned!
But in the meantime, the takeaway for today is that God is in control. And no matter what your current circumstance, no matter how dark or bleak, it does not mean that is what the final verdict for you will be. So rest in that. Rest in the fact that God is in control of your destiny. And trust that His will and plan for you is right and good.
* A huge shout-out to those brothers who are helping me bear these burdens (Galatians 6:2), and continuing to stir me on to love and good works (Hebrews 10:24), and who have helped carry me to the One who can heal all of our problems (Mark 2:1-5).