Throughout the month of April I am taking a break from writing in order to focus on other things. As a result I am re-posting some of my most popular articles.
Every person experiences times of sadness and hopelessness, times universally felt by the rich and the poor, the famous and the unknown, men and women, grownups and children.
The beautiful truth is that there is hope for you and me.
I often use the YouVersion bible app on my iPhone. Two weeks ago they advertised that each person who began a three-week devotional plan and completed it on time would be entered in a drawing for one of five iPad minis.
I almost always read the bible in the mornings and pray, but my humanity got the best of me and I started a devotional just because I could have a remote chance of winning an iPad mini. I chose the Lead Like Jesus plan put together by Ken Blanchard.
God had other plans, I am convinced.
Earlier this week the Scripture for the plan was 2 Corinthians 9:8 (ESV):
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work.
This verse blew my mind.
Just the first four words are enough for my times of doubt:
And God is able.
Paul goes on, however, to explain that all of God’s grace is available to each and every one of us who is a believer. Grace is when you receive something you do not deserve. Grace is what you need to get through a difficult situation or to forgive someone who has harmed you.
The rest of the verse drives home the fact that this grace is available everywhere all of the time in order for me to have “all sufficiency,” or contentment, allowing me to thrive in doing good work.
I do not get angry; generally I am very cool headed. A few days later, though, a minor incident had me seething. I had to go on a long walk to cool off.
In the middle of that walk this Scripture came back to my mind and I began to ask God to do this for me, to make all of his grace abound for me in this situation at this time. I had been trying to have peace on my own all morning and had failed miserably.
Five minutes later I was completely at peace. God did what he said he would because he will always keep his promises and my desire was his desire.
Does God always answer the way we want him to? No. But 2 Corinthians 9:8 is a promise, and God cannot deny his promises. He must fulfill them because Paul says elsewhere that in Jesus Christ every promise is “Yes.”
The next time I hit a hard situation I have a new plan:
- Admit to God I am unable to remedy the issue or bring about the desired result.
- Pray for him to fulfill his promise in 2 Corinthians 9:8.
- Ask for guidance on what to do next.
If you are a believer there are no impossible situations, no times or places where God cannot help and rescue you.
If you are still undecided about following God, let this verse remind you that no one and no place and no time is out of God’s reach.
Where do you need to apply 2 Corinthians 9:8 in your own life?