Youíve heard it said that you donít know who your friends are until the bottom drops out from under you. We have all had fair weather friends that are there when things are going great, but a true friend does not leave you when things are falling apart. The scriptures declare that God is a friend that sticks closer than a brother.
The ultimate measure of friendship is not measured during comfort and convenience, but during challenge and controversy. Therefore the test of friendship comes during adversity. God shows His great faithfulness to us during times of adversity in our lives. I love the emphatic statement that Paul makes in 1 Corinthians 1:9, ďGod is faithful.Ē All through the scriptures God has proven His faithfulness to His people.
Abraham received a promise of a son. When it looked as though this promise would never be realized, God proved His faithfulness. Noah received a word from the Lord that there would be a flood. Though time passed and it looked as though this word would never come to pass, God in His faithfulness fulfilled this word and provided for Noah. God again proved His faithfulness to Elijah by feeding him with the birds. God again proved His great power and faithfulness to Gideon with just 300 men. God met with a little boy named David in His battle with Goliath. God parted a sea for His children to cross over on dry ground. Jesus Christ met Peter while walking on the water. He shook the jail for Paul and Silas. On and on we can name instances where the Lord proved His faithfulness to His children.
Remember that true faithfulness is proven during times of adversity and hardship. This brings us to the opportunity there is for the believer during these times.
1. There is opportunity for praise.
When God delivered all these His children in the scripture you find each one them engaging in praise to God because of their deliverance. In the midst of adversity we all have a choice to make. We can either look at the storm we are walking through or we can anticipate just how God is going to show His faithfulness to us through this circumstance. I love to read the psalms that David wrote. He always begins by talking about his problem, then he moves to trusting God in his conflict, then he ends with giving Him praise while the conflict is still on going. David constantly moved from tears to trust to triumph. This seems to be the moving factors of every believer
2. There is opportunity for perspective.
How often have we all been in a conflict that it didnít seem as though God would deliver. Remember He didnít deliver the Hebrew children out of the fire; He delivered them into the fire. Our perspective should reflect that of the Hebrew children in that even if we have to go into the fire we know that God ultimately will deliver us in any adversity. Therefore, our course should not be altered nor should our calling be ignored. We must walk with confidence that our great God and Father has walked before us and prepared the way.
3. There is opportunity for promise.
With every adversity there is a corresponding promise made that gives us hope and confidence. The scripture is true and can be trusted. When Jesus faced the enemy on the Mt. of temptation He responded with the promises from Godís word. Every believer needs to operate out of the Rhema Word of God, which is that specific word given for a specific time in a specific manner. This flows from the believer when we embrace the Logos which is the totality of the Word of God.
4. There is opportunity for provision.
Every time adversity comes our way it is an opportunity to watch God provide. Much like Abrahams experience with the sacrifice of his son and the ram that God provided. Every one wants to believe in Godís healing power, but no one wants to get sick in order for God to provide the healing. Everyone wants to believe that God will provide our needs, but no one wants to suffer need in order to be set up for the provision. Much of what goes on in our lives is simply that. We are being set up for the provision of God.
Conclusion: God indeed is faithful and can be trusted. God will provide. He will make a way where there is no way. As His child, I can say that I have a friend in Jesus that is faithful and that I can trust is bringing about all things for my good and His glory. I must seize the opportunities before me in my walk with Him and glorify is name in whatever state I find myself in.