Theology in trials.

He is the sovereign King over all things, and that was starting to go deep into my life.

Why is Theology important in Difficult times?

About 10 years ago I was taking my wife to the dentist. I had taken off work and was excited for some time away. While we were there I got a voice mail from my boss. I went outside to listen to the voice mail and slowly the tragedy that was about to happen caved in on me. “We would like to ask you to resign effectively by the end of the month.” Those words, didn’t really sink in to well for at least the first 30 seconds. All I could do was count the days, 15 days. But my wife was pregnant with our 5th child, and we were at least 4 to 5 hours from family or any sort of place we could stay.

Slowly outside of this dentist office a knot and a lump began to develop in my stomach. My stomach ached, I thought I was going to be sick.

The dizzying array of thoughts flooding through my mind, swirled past me like I was on the Tilt-A-Whirl at the carnival, and I just couldn’t catch myself.

I was about to have my fifth child, while being homeless and jobless. I know there are worse things in life, but that one hit me hard. I had no idea it was coming.

What I did not do was run through the “how to deal with suffering steps.” I knew the steps from a once-preached-sermon, but those steps didn’t even come to mind.

What did I do? I cried out to God. But because of the theology of our church, when I called on God, there was more confidence and hope. He is the sovereign King over all things, and that was starting to go deep into my life.

The more theology we know and understand, then more of God we can grasp and believe. So when we cry out to God in trouble: we call on a God who we know is able. Job said, “I have heard of you with the hearing of my ear, but now I have seen you with my eyes” (Job 42:5) The more we know of who God is, the more we will believe rightly in the middle of difficulty.

So how do we prepare for trials? Study who God is.

John Calvin on Serving

we must understand that it is no excuse to plead that we have been shocked and dismayed because we see that we are unable to bear the burden that God lays upon our shoulders; for He knows what we can do—nothing at all.

I came across this quote from John Calvin years ago, and I am not exactly sure from where. But lately this quote is very needed in my life. I find the good work of husbanding, fathering, and pastoring are not easy. They are beyond my ability. It is good to know that the Lord already knows I can do – nothing at all. And so I work because it is God who is at work in me both to will and work for his good pleasure.

We see a great number whose heart fails them when they see that the work is greater than their strength: “Oh,” they say, “how shall I be able to do that? I feel that I am so weak and I can see that is a great burden and beyond my bearing.”

No, no; let us just work, however difficult things may be, and God will work for us. And since St. Paul in talking of things that surpass the strength of men never fails to exhort them to do them, we must understand that it is no excuse to plead that we have been shocked and dismayed because we see that we are unable to bear the burden that God lays upon our shoulders; for He knows what we can do—nothing at all.

And moreover, He will not fail us while we walk in humility, and undertake to subject ourselves to Him and to put ourselves entirely in His hands.