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God knows what you are going through

January 28th, 2009 Posted in encouragement, Pastor's corner, sermons

The apostle Paul was in a Roman dungeon for his faithfulness to the gospel. But one night, Jesus Christ paid him a visit and offered these encouraging words:

“But the following night the Lord stood by him and said,  ‘Be of good cheer (or courage), Paul; for as you have testified for Me in Jerusalem, so you must also bear witness at Rome’” (Acts 23:11 NKJV).

Jesus was revealing to the great apostle that he was more than aware of his situation. Just because he was in a prison didn’t mean that God had lost track of him.

John Bunyan

There is a story of a minister who came to see John Bunyan, the minister who wrote Pilgrim’s Progress, in prison. He told Bunyan, “Friend, the Lord sent me to you, and I have been seeking for you in half the prisons in England.”

“No, that cannot be,” said Bunyan. “For if the Lord had sent you to me, you would have come here at once, for He knows I have been here for years.”

Jesus is there with us in our “prisons,” as well

For some people, it is a literal jail cell they are in because they have broken the law. Yet, as they have asked for God’s forgiveness, Jesus is with them there in that prison cell.

Maybe you are in a different kind of prison right now, the prison of a hospital bed. You would love to get up and just walk out, but you can’t.

Yet Jesus is there in that hospital room, convalescent home, or room in their home, saying, “Be courageous. You are not alone, and I am fully aware of your suffering.”

Or it might be a prison cell of mourning, because of the loss of a loved one through death. Whatever or wherever your prison is, Jesus is there with you now.

And Jesus also knows what lies ahead

That is why He came to Paul in this hour of need, because He knew he would need this special touch.

Paul was not  really privy to what was going on all around him at this point. He did not know that 40 men had taken an oath not to eat or drink until they had killed Paul!

Sometimes, ignorance can be bliss. Many times, it’s really a good thing that we don’t know all that is swirling around us in both the supernatural and natural realm.

God reveals to us as much as we need to know, when we need to know it. Not necessarily more and certainly not less, but what we need to know. Your troubles, though unexpected, did not come as a surprise to God.

The military has a term it uses for sensitive information. If it is necessary for you to know something, it’s on a “need-to-know basis.” In the same way, God gives us what we “need to know,” when we need it.

A final quote from C.H. Spurgeon

Let me close with a quote from Spurgeon that should bring hope to any Christian facing a trial:

“The Lord knows all about your troubles before they come to you; He anticipates them by His tender foresight. Before Satan can draw the bow, the preserver of men will put His beloved beyond the reach of the arrow. Before the weapon is forged in the furnace, and prepared on the anvil, He knows how to provide us with armor of proof which shall blunt the edge of the sword and break the point of the spear.”

11 Responses to “God knows what you are going through”

  1. lilian says:

    Hi thank you for your encouraging messages actually God knows what we are going through and am sure He will never let His people put to shame

  2. Christian says:

    A Birthday Blessing and Wish

    from Psalm 29, last verse,

    The LORD will give strength unto His people; the LORD will bless His people with peace.

    May The Comforter comfort you and make this day special his way.

    Lots of love to you all in Jesus,
    Christian Lucas

  3. Katie says:

    Pastor Greg,

    Thank you for the reminder that the Lord knows all about our troubles. This is a particularly hard time financially for most everyone close to me. But I am comforted by what I know, not what I don’t know!

    Please pass on a Happy Birthday to Cathe and thank her for sharing her heart with us all last night at Bible study. May God bless and comfort you all.

  4. Gary says:

    These messages continue to inspire. Sometimes it seems as if I have lost my bride because of the place she is in, and she is siting right in front of me. These messages are exactly what we need to hear at this point in our lives. She is locked in her own prison, and in these tough economic times it is just one more thing for her to deal with. I have high hopes every day when I spend time with the Lord. Thank you for your continued service to the Lord and mankind.

    Your brother in Christ, Gary Gonzales

  5. Teri says:

    Good morning. Just wanted to thank you for your blog messages! They are such an encouragement and a blessing to me.

    Also, I wanted to wish Cathe a very Happy Birthday!
    Thank you, Cathe, for your message yesterday morning at the Women’s Bible study. It was awesome! I am continuing to pray for you and your family.

    God Bless, Teri

  6. Cari says:

    Dear Pastor Greg,

    I just wanted you to please pass a message on to your wife Cathe. I went to Bible study tonight at Harvest, and we had the privilege of listening to Cathe speak on the big screen for our lesson in Ephesians 6. It was an emotional lesson and we were all in tears! We love Cathe for her speaking on wearing God’s armor, and how emotional she was and passionate, and I totally learned a lot tonight. Cathe is an awesome speaker, and God Bless you and your whole family, and thank Cathe for such a great great message. See you on Sunday!

    I sure love everything about Harvest!

    Praying for all the saints!

    Cari

  7. Marie says:

    Pastor Greg,
    Your daily devotionals, especially this past week, has really matched up with what is going on in my life. “God does know” and “Courage” were right on target with what I had to go through that day. I have drawn closer to the Lord. Like James MacDonald said, a new start. I feel like God left his ninety-nine to come after me. He has blessed me. My trust and little faith I have has guided me through. Thank you for being that teacher that impacts many lives through your teaching. God is good! And He never leaves us.

  8. Anne says:

    I enjoy reading these recaps on the previous Sunday sermons. It helps me remember them, instead of easily forgetting about it. Thank you.

  9. Susie says:

    Thank you, Pastor Greg, for such encouraging words for today. I am also looking forward to seeing you in Dallas on February 7. I can relate to your Lost Boy story in that I am the mother of a prodigal daughter and am helping to raise her son. Your story reminds me that nothing is impossible with God. May God bless you.

    Susie York

  10. Stacy says:

    I came to Christ later in life. The difference between my life before and after knowing Him, especially in this area of trials and suffering, has been immeasurable. Despair and anxiety filled me before, but now I come to the Lord in prayer and give Him my concerns.

    Faith comes first for the believer, but it is trust in our Lord God and Savior that changes everything. I now trust that God is in control of all areas in my life. I only need to continue in faith and obey Him as He leads me.

  11. Krystal says:

    Thank you so much for those kind words. They have helped me while I face trials in my own life. I know that I must still praise God. Thank you so much for the reassurance that God is on our side and knows what we are going through and walks with us every step of the way! God bless you, Pastor Greg! You are always in my prayers!

    Krystal Nelson

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