How to Turn Hardships into Blessings!
All too often we feel the pains and hardships of this world. At times it even feels like the world has turned against us. Have you ever felt like life was conspiring against you and bringing every kind of hardship imaginable upon you? Do you find yourself feeling angry and resentful as a result? Do you ever blame God for these misfortunes?
In truth, we have all probably felt this way at one time or another in our lives. The fact of the matter is that someone is indeed conspiring against us, but it’s not God! The hard truth of the matter is that there are evil forces in this world who seek to destroy our lives and steal our souls away from God.
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. – Ephesians 6:12
This of course begs the question, how should we respond and react when these hardships are directed against us? Let us explore this question now and discover the secret of how to turn hardships into blessings in a style that is all Jesus!
Let’s begin with understanding what doesn’t work and why. When the evil come against us they are counting on us having one of these typical reactions:
- Sometimes doubt creeps into our minds and we question our faith and whether God cares about us or not. If we are not careful that doubt can eventually corrupt our hearts as well and we may begin to doubt He exists at all. This is precisely the goal of the evil and is what they are hoping our reaction will be to the hardships they have brought against us. By reacting in this way we are essentially throwing in the towel and more importantly throwing away our salvation!
- Other times we may get fired up and try to retaliate against the evil by resorting to binding and casting out the demons that have wronged us. Unfortunately, it’s a common misconception that every Christian is granted such authority and can simply wield this weapon against the evil at will. Firstly, the Lord has to specifically call you to this type of role and grant you such authority. Even if he does this, however, these tactics always result in extreme escalation. More powerful and more determined demons than the ones you casted out begin to arrive and take their place. Before you realize what happened you find yourself in the midst of intense spiritual warfare that you are not prepared to deal with and don’t fully comprehend. It’s very easy for us to overstep our bounds and give the evil an excuse to retaliate against us even harder. This is a common tactic that they resort to by trying to entice us to overstep our authority and thus grant them more leeway to retaliate harder.
These responses play right into the evil’s hands! So the question becomes what should we do?
The answer is simply to take a page out of Jesus’ playbook and learn how to find opportunities in misfortunes. Jesus is the master at turning the tables on the evil by converting hardships into blessings. Nobody does it better than Jesus when it comes to bringing good out of evil. Here are some practical ways in which we can do the same.
- First and foremost, when hardships come we must run towards God, not away from him. It’s in these times of trial that we must draw close to the Lord and lay our burdens at his feet in prayer and petition. We are granted free will and we have to choose to enlist the Lord’s help in our lives. Don’t hesitate to get the Lord involved in the game because nobody plays the game better than the Lord Himself! Nothing would please him more than to go to battle on our behalf and turn the tables on the evil.
- Secondly, the evil barrage us with hardships because they are either afraid of what we have been doing or potentially could be doing to advance God’s kingdom. If we stop and think about that for a while we can often identify what it is the evil are trying to stop us from doing. Herein lies our opportunity to turn the tables on them and do the exact thing that they feared we might do. In fact, if we do nothing else except the first step of running towards God we have already turned the tables on them and reversed their curse into our blessing! But why stop there when we can take it even further? Let’s really stick it to them by finding ways to further advance God’s kingdom by praying for others, serving others, spending more time in God’s Word, and reaching out to people in Love in the midst of our own turmoil. Nothing is more powerful than a prayer offered up on behalf of another person in the midst of our own struggles! And above all else, it’s the power of prayer that the evil fear the most!
I’d like to share a personal experience that serves to illustrate this quite well. I had recently made some adjustments to automate some of the work we do with the prayer chain in order to better meet the prayer needs of everyone who comes to our site. Immediately upon completing those enhancements many hardships befell me including waking up the next day with a fracture in my foot that wasn’t there when I went to bed. I was barraged with feelings of despair and depression as all the daily chores of life that I could no longer handle began to rush into my mind. It was then that I understood what was happening and decided to turn to the Lord and put this strategy of turning the tables on the evil into practice.
Instead of wallowing in self-pity over the things I could no longer do I suddenly realized that I could do so much more for God’s kingdom now that I could no longer be distracted by my daily routine of chores. In an irony that can only be inspired by the Lord Himself, the evil had left me with nothing else to do except the one thing that they wanted to stop me from doing…. working on the prayer chain! This article and others recently posted are the result of turning a hardship into a blessing! It’s my hope that through my turmoil many others will benefit and grow from this knowledge and understanding.
May God bless you all!