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Blessed Afflictions
by Rev. Brian Mathis
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Good morning! Have you ever considered your afflictions as a blessing from God? I know some of you just said, “What in the world did he just say?” You see when we think of the word affliction it cares negative ideas we think of disease or strife and no one really wants to experience that in their lives. Even though we don’t desire to experience them; they always seems to find us, not only for the saint but also the sinner the difference comes from understanding what the rewards are for enduring those trials that come. I have gotten were I listen to an audio Bible as I work out and even some days when I am alone at work. It helps me to manage my time and allows me to have God’s word penetrating my life. Especially when I am really doing something I do not enjoy like running; talk about an affliction, I am still not yet fond of it. But this morning Psalm 90 really jumped out at me as I was trying to finish week two of Couch to 5k. The part I desire to share begins in verse 12 and it reads;

“12 So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom. 13 Return, O LORD! How long? Have pity on your servants! 14 Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love that we may rejoice and be glad all our days. 15 Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us, and for as many years as we have seen evil. 16 Let your work be shown to your servants, and your glorious power to their children. 17 Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands upon us; yes, establish the work of our hands!”
Psalms 90:12-17 (ESV)

Verse 12 is something we all must be willing to understand if we really want to enjoy the time we have been given. We do not know when God will call anyone of us home. Preachers often quote this verse Matthew 24:36, “36 “But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.” talking about the rapture of the church; but in the meantime death comes for people every day. We must learn to appreciate and enjoy even those days that we would rather not experience because they are a gift from God.

One of the interesting parts of this Psalm is it seems to contradict one of the things I have always been taught as a Christian. Verse 13 would claim that God departs from His people but in truth we turn and move away from Him. We seek to do everything in our own power and when things do not turn out the way we desire we try to blame God for not being there when He was there the whole time. We just chose to do it our way instead of His. So the writer of the Psalm considers himself to be afflicted. When in truth he has been blessed. Each day we are given is a blessing from God. When I look back over my life I have had to stop and realize every time my life was difficult and hard I was trying to maintain control. In the days that I started off by turning everything over to God I can remember walking in peace even on the days when my entire world has been turned upside down. The second part of vs. 15 is where I want to leave you today in the NLT version it reads, “Give us gladness in proportion to our former misery! Replace the evil years with good.” In my life it has required I change my perspective about life and stopped focusing on today but began believing in what God has promised for my tomorrows. His word is true and His promises are real. Philippians 1:6, “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” Do you trust Him in your afflictions? If so you will trust Him all the more with the blessings He has in store for you. Have a blessed day as you walk in the light of God’s Word.

If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be! TRUST JESUS NOW

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