Surviving Night Seasons
I was talking to someone recently who was concerned about friends who had backslidden because they'd hit a difficult season in their lives. We all go through what I call 'night' seasons and if we're not firmly rooted in the Lord it can cause doubt and unbelief which leads to backsliding as these people had done.
In this parable, Jesus is talking about those that fall away when they hit hard times and those who hang in there and keep on producing.
There are many of us who know how difficult these night seasons are, it's not easy to stay strong in the faith when you are suffering and going through testing times. And as we approach end times we will be challenged more and more.
Jesus warns us in Matthew 24:23-25. So how do we stay strong in our faith in difficult times?
here are a few ways that I believe will help.
Walk and Pray in the Spirit - The prayerless life is a powerless life! Jude 1:20 and Ephesians 6:18 tells us to pray in the Spirit. When we do this it strengthens our 'spirit-man' and weakens our flesh which leads us to walk in the Spirit not allowing our 'flesh-man' to control our minds. Galatians 5:25,6:1, Romans 4:12, 8:1-14, 2 Corinthians 5:17
Keep Your Eyes on Jesus - Hebrews 12:1-2 It's so easy to begin thinking that the situation we are in is where we will always live but that's a lie of the enemy to discourage us! Don't ever give up! As Queen Victoria once said, "We are not interested in the possibilities of defeat. They do not exist!". Our God is bigger than any problem or difficulty we may face! believe that you will come out stronger if you just hang on! Look to the future - Look to Jesus! Morning always comes after the night. Hebrews 10:35-36.
Stay in His Word! Read His word everyday! Not just on Sundays at church! his Word is His Promise! It's food for our spirits. We wouldn't starve our bodies, so why starve your spirit? When you're strong in the Word all the negative voices around us will not cause fear and doubt to rise. Psalms 119:105, 33:4, 119:28, 89, 114, 130, 50, 160. Matthew 4:4, Matthews 24:35, Psalms 18:30.
Spend Time in His Presence. Not just visit when you have a need, but just enjoy the presence of God, allow Him to saturate you, strengthen you, refresh and heal you! Don't rush, allow Him to speak to you. Worship and let his love just wash over you! When you're in his presence every burden and stress just falls away! It's a beautiful place to be. We all need it! Psalm 16:11, Acts 2:28 Moses knew the importance of God's presence, he refused to make a move unless if God's presence went with him. Exodus 33:14-15, Psalm 140:13, 31:20, 100:2
Praise Him! Praise interferes with the enemy's plan! Ask Paul and Silas, Acts 16:22-25. While they were singing in prison stocks, an earthquake hit that opened the prison doors, if you feel imprisoned and you've prayed all you can - then just praise Him cause your victory is on the way! When we pray we come into his presence but when we praise He comes in OUR presence.
Make your relationship with God a priority. Make sure He is number 1 in your life, keep Him your first love above all else. Revelations 2:4 There is nothing more important. All things of this world are temporary and will eventually pass away, but our relationship with Him is eternal and in the end, that’s all that matters! John 17:3, 10:28, Titus 3:7, Matthew 22:37, 2 Thessalonians 2:16
So dear brothers and sisters in Christ:
"A final word, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power". (Ephesians 6:10)
"Stand firm ... and be strong in your faith" (1 Peter 5:9)
God bless you all and have a great week!