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Š2013 Christopher Bork


Walking Through Troubled Times By Christopher Bork

Troubled times will come to all of us at one time or another. Adversity is no stranger to this world. As the saying goes, you’ve either been through a tough time, are going through a tough time, or are preparing to go through a tough time. One may see troubled times that comprise financial hardship, another deals with marital problems. Some people suffer from illnesses, others from various combinations of them all. The question is, when it does come, how will you react? What will you do? And if your day of trouble lasts longer than you expect, how will you get through it? I am not here to suggest that your problems are easy to overcome. I just look around at all the problems in our country, and at many of the things that my family and friends are experiencing. Some are jobless, and in danger of losing their homes. Others are ill, and chest-deep in debt to hospitals and doctors. These are not problems that are easily overcome! However, we do not have to allow adversity to overcome us!

Prepare For Adversity One thing that has become extremely evident to me is that we do not prepare ourselves for trouble. The first way to prepare is to realize that trouble will come. Know that being part of a fallen, imperfect world is having to endure times of trouble. If you falter in times of trouble, how small is your strength! Proverbs 24:10 (NIV) The second way is to strengthen yourself spiritually. Go to church, not just to be blessed, but to prepare yourself for difficult times. Knowing and loving Jesus does not guarantee that you will endure the battles of hard times without injury.

Š2013 Christopher Bork


Remember To Grieve Let me just say, that if you have suffered a loss of some sort, whether it was a death of a friend or family member, a divorce, or some other sort of loss, you should take the time to grieve. It can be tempting during painful times to ask, “Where is God?” Even more so, it may feel that loved ones, friends, and even God has deserted you. At these times it is helpful to remember that we have a Mediator that is acquainted with all of our sufferings. In the Garden, during the most stressful moments of Jesus’ life, He felt emotionally abandoned by his closest friends. You have a Savior Who understands and knows the pain you endure. Also, Jesus took time to grieve, so should we. Jesus wept and was a “man of sorrows, and well acquainted with grief.” There is no shame in grief, and it is not necessarily more “spiritual” to put on a smile and act like all is well, when life feels like it is falling apart. Boost Your Spiritual Strength If you find yourself being overcome by stressors and literally want to hide yourself until the storms are over, you must realize that your spiritual strength is weak. Realizing that hard times bring much stress, it is extremely important to go to the Scriptures and to God in prayer in order to bolster your spiritual fortitude. You may think that no one realizes how difficult your situation is, and that they could never know how hard it is for you to put one foot in front of the other. However, even if no one on earth could ever understand your problems, God knows them and has the power to help you with them. Boost your faith with the Word of God, and go to Him in prayer, worshiping Him and loving Him. Remember that the strength of your relationship with God has everything to do with the time that you invest in Him. That, in turn, is directly proportional to the development of your ability to cope with your problems. Don’t Just Let Go Of Fear And Worry, Cast It Off! Remember that worry has been listed by God as something He wants us to give up to Him. Matthew 6:31 (NIV) says, “Be not therefore anxious, saying, what shall we eat? or, what shall we drink? or, wherewithal shall we be clothed?” Christ goes on to

©2013 Christopher Bork


say in this passage that God knows that we have need of these things. I Peter 5:7 says to be “casting all your anxiety upon him, because he careth for you.” Some distinguish between worry and fear. Fear is often described as being an intense feeling of anxiety that can come upon you at any time. When dealing with either worry or fear, one MUST be aggressive! Quote scriptures such as I Peter 5:7 above, and Hebrews 13:5b: “…Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Pray to God for strength, and then take authority over these anxieties in the name of Jesus! If you need a good book on our authority over strongholds and Satan, buy Andrew Wommack’s, The Believer's Authority. Giving our burdens back to God to handle is both commanded and smart. Worry can cause your set of problems to expand. Study upon study has shown us that physical problems can develop from worry and stress that is not handled correctly. Fear and anxiety can literally “put you in the ground.” Allowing God to carry our burdens for us gives us the grace to live longer and more productive lives. Have An Anti-Isolation Policy I have a couple more thoughts on being in the battle during times of trouble. Do not isolate yourself! These feelings can cause you to want to pull away from people, and especially God, Who is your Deliverer. Respectfully, but honestly, talk with God as frankly as you would a parent, family member or a close friend. Put aside formalities and be real with Him. What He desires from you is intimacy, anyway. I cannot emphasize this enough: during these times, there is a spiritual battle that is going on, and you cannot afford to fight it alone. Additionally, get brothers and sisters in prayer around you. Be in fellowship with other believers. Go to church to receive the Word and be encouraged and strengthened. Last, but not least, do not hesitate to seek out help, ideally from a Pastor or a professional Christian Therapist. They are not only for trauma or major tragedies; they are wonderful objective vessels used by God to help guide you during times when you are overwhelmed and need wise counsel. “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you” - Psalm 32:8

©2013 Christopher Bork


.Ahh…Patience. A Virtue. James talks specifically about patience in James 1:3: “because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.” Times of adversity often feel like they are going on forever. Although we know that God does not tempt us or develop things for us to endure, we do know that He allows us to develop through testing and trials. Having patience allows us to develop strength, perseverance and maturity. James goes on to say in verse 5 that: “Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” Above all, remember Who God is, and what He can do! “Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and His understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:28-31 Opportunity During our life, there are times when we will walk through tough times. During these times, it can seem that our days plod on, fraught with problems that seem endless. It can seem like the tough times are just too tough. But before you give up, remember that it is the challenges that often birth new ideas and possibilities. As a matter of fact, our God-ordained opportunities often come as problems in disguise. In the midst of these difficulties, whether they be self-caused, an attack of the Enemy, or whether it is just life in a fallen world, we need to ask God what He is saying to us in this struggle. God always wants to reveal to us His power, His glory, and His lovingkindness especially during painful times. So look for the opportunities that lay in your path that come as a result or by-product of your dilemma.

©2013 Christopher Bork


Mark Batterson states in his book, In A Pit With A Lion On A Snowy Day, “… the biggest problems present the greatest opportunities for God to reveal his glory and work His purposes.” God is the God of the impossible. When all looks bleak, He loves to reveal His glory by doing what cannot be done by us. And Finally… So where is your relationship with God? Do you talk to Him once in awhile? Do you count Him a friend? How close are you to Him? Your relationship with Jesus is foundational to handling the tough times. If your relationship is weak, the hard times will seem even harder. If it is strong, you will rely on Him. Your burdens become His to carry. Prayer, reading His Word, worship and taking quiet time to listen are all essential to your relationship with Him. Worship is a key to weathering the storm. Remember that worship is not only listening to worship songs, although this is excellent when words are too painful to be spoken. Worship extends into meditation on specific Scriptures that speak to your circumstance. The promises in God’s Word can be a healing balm to the soul. Identifying with characters such as David or Joseph can help you and confirm God’s faithfulness to you. Simply talking with God is also a form of worship. Recall times when you didn’t think you would make it, and yet you did. Those are times when God showed you that He is your Deliverer. Not only is He your Deliverer, but He is near. In The Pursuit Of God, A.W. Tozer writes: “We need never shout across the spaces to an absent God. He is nearer than our own soul, closer than our most secret thoughts.” In conclusion, may you be comforted in knowing that regardless of who you are or your situation, our Holy Almighty God has an everlasting love for you. We’ve scratched the surface of how to get through hard times. We understand that there is probably a whole lot more to talk about, and that you may even have questions. Please feel free to contact us if you do. At ChrisBork.com we often cover topics related to developing a relationship with God, and living the Christian life.

©2013 Christopher Bork

Walking Through Troubled Times