When I lived in an Arizona valley where Phoenix is lying, the surround vistas are awe inspiring.   The plants are so green, the cactus thrives, and you can see for miles (when there is no pollution alert).  In the spring, if you want to call it that, the air can be crisp and cold.  The evening dew bursts forth and slaps your face with the fresh scent of the moist ground.  Then, when the first 100 degree day hits, the green desert starts to turn yellow, and withers to brown.  Everything, including humans look for shade and relief from the heat of the sun.

When things get hot for us, when things start to wither around us and turn bad where do we go for relief?  For the Christian, we turn to God and have faith in Him.  Why is that?   The reason for that is because even if we have family, friends, or co-workers to share our problems with, we still must have faith in God.  If you think about it closely, we don’t have family, we don’t have friends, all we have is our faith, and all we have is our God.

Is there a lesson here? The lesson is that who we have a relationship with, what we have or don’t have has no bearing on our faith in God or in our relationship with Him. Life can beat us down hard, and we have to deal with it the best way we can. It will either make us stronger by faith in God and trusting in Him to care for us, or it will take us down into the pits of despair because we allow it to dominate and control us. Sometimes we try to be noble, and handle everything on our own.  We all have to deal with life in our own way, behind our own eyes, from which no one else can see or experience.  Growing strong out of these lessons is the only way to go. There is no other way to go, except down into the depths of weakness and self indulgence.  Faith in God will keep us out of the grim depths of despair.

The Word of God teaches that we should give thanks for everything.  I learned something this weekend about thanksgiving. We shouldn’t thank God for the bad situation happening to us, but we should thank God for Him being there with us through it all….giving us the strength and hope to carry on.  We must thank God for Who He Is and all of what He has done for us, mostly for sending His Son Jesus Christ to be our Savior! I do not believe God bestows upon us tragedies, disasters, or illness or calamity. But He is there when it happens and is there when it is over, and is there when we are healing from it. He is our source of strength, vitality and healing.

Andre Crouch wrote in his most famous and moving song about trusting God, “Through it all, through it all…..I’ve learned to trust in Jesus, I’ve learned to trust in God.”

Through it all….He gives us faith, hope, and love. He bestows upon us His mercy, His compassion, His grace and His love.  He gives us salvation…His salvation…maybe in mystery but it is salvation none the less.

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