Saturday, December 08, 2012
A Way Out So We Can Stand
"No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it." ... 1 Corinthians 10:13
Don't you just love that verse?
Some Christians apply it only to when we're tempted to do blatantly bad stuff like lying, cheating on our spouse, clinging to unforgiveness or robbing banks or convenience stores.
Yet that verse also fits when we're tempted to worry, to feel afraid of now or the future or when we're tempted to faint from being overwhelmed or allowing great grief turn us into zombies for life. God says even in those times he will provide a way out so that we can stand up under it.
Notice He didn't just say a way out. Rather, a way, a means to stand up under it while it's still there, happening. That's important, for lots of people pray that uncomfortable times/people will go far, far away--and often--God makes us walk through things, not just skirt around them.
Anyway. I remembered this verse yesterday after the shock of the whole America-Might-Be-Mystery-Babylon thing. Like everybody else on the planet, I've experienced many shocks in my life and what God's taught me? It's wise to take some time off after those shocks. Time off to rest, to spend extra time with Him so to receive His comfort and His way of looking at things.
Basically, extra time to hang-out with Him while He heals my shocked head.
Well, there I was yesterday, still kinda reeling from this latest shock, when I found myself in Tom's recliner clicking through some Netflix choices on the screen. I'd bypassed Alias for years and even while that show used to air on tv, I had never watched it. But now? Now I thought, "Maybe I should give Alias a try."
Good gracious. Ten episodes later I am hooked.
Wow--yet one more example of God leading me to the perfect show at the perfect time. Sydney's courage inspires me (makes me look like a wimp, actually) and as Jesus and I sit there together watching, He calms me, assures me that no matter what occurs down the road, I, like Sydney, will be given the courage required--at the perfect moment.
So what I'm saying today? "He will also provide a way out" means different things to different people. For although we are alike in many ways, sharing many of the same needs, not all needs are met in the same ways. God leads some people, while they're healing, to books, the Bible, or long walks or vacations to sunny, exotic places. Perhaps He leads other recovering folks to bake cookies for neighbors, volunteer at soup kitchens or spend a couple days in bed or in their pajamas around the house. He might lead some to call a friend for support, to go to Starbucks for doughnuts, to avoid tv news or to watch a theater movie.
And of course, it's possible to do these things for weeks, even, and still not be healed. We can do them and not know how to receive healing from God. Learning how to receive from God is so vital, well, I can't even tell you.
But I guess I just wish to caution us--myself included--to be oh so careful about our opinions and our words concerning how our relatives or friends or strangers choose to find their way to mental health. "He will also provide a way out"--not just one way--but a way.
For lots of years my 'way out' has often been sitting with Jesus while watching various tv shows or movies, and then comes one day in which I get up, refreshed and ready, to take on this big, bad world no matter what it dumps on me next.
And may none of us ever criticize anybody because their 'way out' didn't match ours. Because it appeared too 'secular', wouldn't have worked for us or took too long. God has custom-designed each of us and deep calls unto deep--and we seldom understand others' deep times with God. Hence, that's one reason God tells us to be slow to speak and to--above all--put on love, the most important thing.
His wisdom brings peace among His kids. His wisdom totally amazes me.
Alias really is cool. Like a kinder, gentler 24. I can't even recall any bad language, nor do I recall Sydney actually killing anybody, but rather, just doing the ol' judo-karate-whatever thing. The scenes from other Countries are gorgeous and the suspense and cliff-hangers are perfect.
But again, I've only watched the first ten episodes, so if the show later became a pit of highly questionable morals, well, please don't tell me. I'll just stop watching if it does. :)
You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you: because he trusts in you.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?