Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States

Tribulation...God’s Love Will Surpass

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"Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God; and the peace of God which surpasses all understanding, will guard your heart and minds through Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:4-7).

This is one of the most beautiful and comforting words you can ever read over and over that fills your heart with peace. Knowing that the Holy Spirit of God had written it for us, in order to fill us with peace causes us to give God all the gratitude and thanks forever and ever.

The attitude that God expected from all of us should allow us to rejoice during our tribulations. Why?

  • When we have the complete understanding that the Lord our God will not leave us to suffer without meaning
  • When we understand that He had suffered first for all of us and prevailed before He asks to go through suffering and tribulations

"No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it" (1 Corinthians 10:13).

Do not focus on what will and can happen rather focus on our Lord who by controlling every situation that can happen and when and how! For He is not going to give you more than you can handle. The deal is that we draw near God and He will draw near us. In each step He is right there fighting, clearing the way for us to pass, grieving for us when we fail, and picking us up when we are down.

"The lord is my shepherd; I shall not want" (Psalm 23:1).

How can we not love Him and adore Him. His is my shepherd who cheers me up and who guides me in every way. He is my savior who did not seize to shed His blood for me in order to save me from the ultimate death and is willing to forgive me when I run back to Him.

"Show me your way O Lord; teach me your paths, lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the Lord of my salvation; on You I wait all the day" (Psalm 25:4-5).

Most tribulations come and go and if you look up and wait on God for a moment, He definitely will show you the way. The reason we fail and fall in more problems is when we decide to take the matter in our own hand and not stop and think that God might have a motive behind it such as to teach us something, to get our attention, or to give us a new blessing.

"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love" (Ephesians 1:3-4).

When you love someone unconditionally you want to do everything for him to help him and to cheer him up. But the Creator of the Universe is the one who loves us unconditionally and there is no reason to fear or not rejoice.

"And lest should be exalted above measure by the abundance of revelations, a thorn in the flash was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ rest on me" (2 Corinthians 12:7-9).

A good example, when St. Paul got a thorn in the flash we see that he had an attitude of gladness instead of complaining and falling into a state of sadness and resentment because he depended on the hand of God to direct him into what is more profitable for him.

"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you" (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).

Therefore recall all the good things that God made for you and how many times He saved you from the hand of Satan and his army. And rejoice and thank God for every condition concerning every condition.

Written by
Nagwa Abdou

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