Enjoy adversity? Whoever heard of such a thing? What am I, a masochist? While being troubled about some matters that were not going as I would like them to go, I mentioned it to Lois. As always, the answer was, “Give thanks.” I said, “Yes.” I headed to the lawn to do some work and gave thanks, but then I received something more. Not only was it needful and fitting that I should give thanks for this, as with everything, I should enjoy what is happening.
People owe me money, I was willing to lend it to them because they were in need, and now I don’t even hear from them. One is even greatly offended at me, though and because I was warning and instructing him for good, and I am to enjoy this?
In these kinds of adverse circumstances, I begin to look at myself and ask, “Where did I go wrong? What did I do wrong? Where have I disobeyed? Why didn’t I see those ominous signs of potential trouble? Was it greed or what?” But the Lord made known to me that He has done His chastening with me. I am now ruling with Him, on His throne. There need be no more correction; I am corrected. So these adversities that are now happening are for another reason. I am not the issue; I need only to sit back and enjoy what the Lord is doing with and in these matters. I am to enjoy my adversities, yet not the adversities themselves so much as watching the Lord working them for good, watching Him do what needs to be done in perfection.
“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28 MKJV).
The enemy will resist and seek to destroy me or mine, but he cannot touch me at the throne of God, where God has now seated me with Him. Neither must I do battle with those who seek my hurt. God will take care of it all, as promised:
“The LORD said to my Lord, ‘Sit at My right side, until I make Your enemies into a footstool for You.’ The LORD will let Your power reach out from Zion, and You will rule over Your enemies. Your glorious power will be seen on the day You begin to rule. You will wear the sacred robes and shine like the morning sun in all of Your strength” (Psalms 110:1-3 CEV).
Yes, the passage refers to the Lord Jesus Christ, and it is also a promise for every believer who comes to rest and victory in the Lord Jesus Christ. He has obtained that victory for His entire Body. Each member must enter into that place of rest, of victory, of overcoming, and enjoy the adversities.
Surely, Abraham, Elijah, Moses, along with all the saints, apostles, and prophets are watching developments on earth. To us it looks messy and foreboding. Consider the insane hatred the Arabs and Muslims have for Israel, Jews, and Christians, for instance, not to mention so many other evils occurring and threatening. But I know that those in Heaven who have gained the victory are watching God at work and thoroughly enjoying it, knowing He has the victory and that it will all end well.
Enjoy the adversities? When we come to that place of victory within, we will be able to do as did Paul and Silas. With torn flesh and backs bleeding, they sang praises to God in the middle of the night while chained in prison cells, though they were blameless of any wrongdoing and unjustly punished. They had the victory within. They were not only giving thanks; they were enjoying the adversity. They were confident of God and His work. And God saved the jailer and his household (Acts 16).
We can have the finest of health, family, friends, home, car, weather, foods, art – all possessions and abilities to excel above everyone else in this world, yet if we do not have the capacity to enjoy, we cannot enjoy any of these things. Place a great piece of art in front of a dog and he is as inclined to lift his leg on it as to look at it. So it is with man. Without the internal victory in Christ, we cannot enjoy the best; we have no ability to do so. On the other hand, we can be beaten and chained in a dungeon on false charges, and enjoy God and His doing because we have the capacity within to do so. What we have externally is not what counts. We see the truth of this everywhere all the time.
Why is this? It is because our whole existence here on earth is not for the things of this world, but for that which comes after. It is for God Himself.
So now I enjoy the view from the throne above and watch God work, resting in Him, knowing that all will be well, just as He has promised.
– Victor Hafichuk (September 3, 2008)
We are called to do right because it is right, whether pleasing to anyone or not. We are here to choose the successful and true right, the one and only kind of right there is, and not what we ignorantly and foolishly imagine and choose to be right, in that it is selfishly advantageous.
If there is one thing that is universally lacking among those who profess the Name of the Lord, it is godly submission. There may be submission to a creed, or the keeping of certain rules, varying from one group and set of doctrines to another, but the pressure to conform to an appearance is not the submission of God. Submission to Him comes by receiving, believing, and obeying those He sends in Jesus Christ, who preach the living Word of Life. Only by this submission can there be peace, harmony, salvation and life. Anything else, whether done in His Name or not, tends to disorder, confusion, and death.
Jesus Christ is the undisputed Shepherd for those who believe, Who cares for and leads His sheep. He sends shepherds in His Name for this purpose, to feed His sheep, as He specifically said and did with Peter. Is this fact not what the pope of Rome uses to claim his legitimacy and authority? But false claims such as his do not dispel what is authentic and needful. There are those who are sent by God (not ordained of men), who serve Him in leading others in the way. Since His way means life, submission is critical to the working out of salvation for those to whom He sends His servants.