TEXT: PROV 4:23; JN 15:2; JS 1:2-4; 2 COR 4:17; 2 COR 5:1-4

What is it with America’s love affair with “reality" TV? It seems that every Fall we are invited to tune into some strange, voyeuristic obsession with the adventurous, the dramatic and (most frequently) downright weird! Some of our political leaders are getting into the act with their own versions of reality television. Call me judgmental if you want, but I am shocked that the producers consistently dish up what is foolishly called “reality.”

Here is “real” reality:
  • People work hard to provide for their families, and they lose their jobs. 
  • People take care of their bodies, but by some strange twist they are diagnosed with a debilitating disease. 
  • Parents love and nurture their children, yet some of their offspring turn against them and against the faith.

The bottom line is that life doesn’t always work as we had planned. Needless to say, people in these circumstances are not only living in reality; they are living with fear!

In my last last post, I challenged you to face your fears and counter them with the truth. You will remember that in a metaphorical sense, our fears "talk" to us. The fear of failure tells us that we are not as competent as others. The fear of the future tells us that we might not have enough money to protect us from danger. And the fear of people tells us that we need to do whatever someone else wants, so that we will be “acceptable” and “liked.” But “real” reality is often hard, and from a very earthly perspective, reality is accompanied with many fears

So what can be done? We need to tell ourselves the truth—over and over again. God’s truth is an antidote to the fears that reality produces. 

When troubles enter your life, refocus on all the good that God is doing.

Have you been aware that in your current situation, whether good or bad, God is at work? He is! And we would be wise to guard our hearts with the truth about our great and loving God.

Take a moment to read the passages I’ve listed above and then meditate on the following truths.

TRUTH 1: In the midst of our trials, God is working to prune our lives (John 15:2). Several times over the course of a growing season, a vineyard keeper would “prune” or “clean” the vines. Clearing away some leaves and branches allowed for greater fruit bearing. And the same is true in our spiritual lives. 

God allows pain and disappointment to prune away what might subtly become idolatrous. But the by-product is a life that pleases the Lord and glorifies Him.

TRUTH 2: In the midst of our trials, God is working to strengthen us emotionally and spiritually (James 1:2-4). Life can be tedious at times, so we need endurance.

God allows trials to produce spiritual “muscle” for the days He gives to us here on planet earth.

TRUTH 3: In the midst of our trials, God is working to create in us a longing for heaven. Unfortunately many Christ-followers plan their lives around career advancement, a vacation home, or comfortable retirement years. However, God is preparing us for eternity (2 COR 4:17; 5:1-4). It’s not that we should ignore the blessings and joys of this life, but God wants us to live our lives for His glory and praise, even in the midst of our trials.

Reality? It is not always a laughable, nor “happy, happy, happy” situation. Life can be hard. In fact, life can be frightening! But don’t focus on the pain of the moment. Meditate on what God is doing. He will never abandon us or forsake us. Therefore, let’s set our minds on loving Him and enjoying Him forever!

You may also like...