Rejoice with us, Church! God has given us the victory and our season of adversity is over! Praise God!
We give all praises, all glory and all honor to our Father in heaven for surely He is good. His mercies endure forever and His love knows no bounds!
Where to begin in telling you our story. If you’ve been following along this blog you are aware that my husband and I have been experiencing adversity for the past 18 months. We have learned how to live out James 1:2, made decisions to have our responses scriptural-based according to nine responses found in 2 Kings 19 and we have even gone so far as to count it all joy as James taught in chapter one. Though there were days that really tested us, we found that through it all we needed to adopt behaviors that would honor God in the midst of our adversity.
If you are a new reader, then let me tell you our story. My husband and I were enjoying a season of peace while serving God in ministry at our church as well as hosting the Life Group Bible study in our home. We enjoyed the peace that this season offered us. We enjoyed our summers mountain exploring in our 4×4. Little did we know that would end soon.
Eighteen months ago we received our first notice that things were going to be different and over the next few months the seriousness of the situation arose. We had to hire an attorney and as you know, they ask for retainers. So, over the next few months, we attempted to resolve the issue through our lawyer but met with resistance every time.
The peace we experienced when we first moved to this province, was still with us. That’s the difference, the peace that comes from Jesus is a lasting peace. He said in John 14:27 that He came to give us a peace that man cannot give. It is His peace that we have in our lives, that is a part of us no matter what the storm brings. Remember the incident in the boat, when Jesus was sleeping and the disciples were filled with fear because the wind and rain were too much for the boat? What did Jesus say? One word, well, three actually, “Peace, be still” (Mark 4:39).
Peace, joy. Two qualities that we developed during this adversity. Not that we didn’t have either peace or joy beforehand but now we can say it is grounded in us.
There were days when we didn’t like checking the mail or our email either. Bad news comes in written form sometimes, at least it did for us. Each time we received news that made our situation worse, there was only one thing we could do and that was to give it to the Lord. He knew we were going to get that letter, He knew what the letter contained. He knew what we needed to strengthen our faith.
Yes, the title of this post is Adversity: When Heaven’s Will Came to Earth. It might seem like a strange title to you but really, it isn’t.
Let me show you what I mean. Take a look at James 1:2-8. He is teaching us, not just the scattered twelve tribes, but for us too, that our faith can be strengthened if we do the following:
- count it all joy when adversity comes
- know that the testing of faith works patience
- patience can be complete if we’re not impatient
- ask God for heavenly wisdom
- believe you will receive that wisdom when you ask for it
Do you see that this passage teaches that adversity can be used by God to strengthen us? Remember what Paul said in Romans 8:28, that for those who are called according to God’s purpose, that all things work out for good. Not just some things, but all things.
From this perspective, adversity can be a good thing. I don’t believe that it depends on the adversity, not according to Paul’s teaching anyway. Some adversities are worse than others but that’s not the issue here. The issue is using the difficult times to grow in faith, to lean into God and be stronger in Biblical knowledge and wisdom.
Bathe yourself in prayer, not only your own prayer but also the prayer support of your local church body. This would be fulfilling the instruction to carry one another’s burdens. This also gives them a part in the journey towards giving God the glory. They will have seen the difficult times you’ve experienced and would be able to partake in the joy of the victory that God will deliver to you.
Scripture passages can help with this growth. Isaiah 41:10-13 is a passage God gave me on July 14, 2016, and I have read this over and over again. When you are seeking God in His Word, He will answer you and give you passages to stand on, to rely on as you go through hard times.
To continue on with our story. Six months ago when the first Case Conference was held, we met with one of our Pastors to bring our situation before Heaven’s Court. We had prepared for this by reading how heaven’s courtroom operates and were ready to bring our documentation of the case to the heavenly courtroom. We are aware that in court, there are three people, plus the defendant. Jesus, our Advocate, the accuser of the brethren and God the Father who is the Judge in this courtroom.
As we prayed through, ensuring that the accuser had nothing to accuse us of before the Judge, we all sensed in our spirits that the Judge made His ruling in our favor. Praise God! We had the victory, we had peace. We just needed to bide our time for the outcome.
Two months later was the next case conference. We sincerely hoped and prayed that the case would be settled at this time. When that didn’t happen, our thoughts were such that God has something else planned and we would have to wait it out. Everything we have belongs to Him so He knows our situation and will supply as needed.
I love how God knows everything. In Proverbs 3:5-6, we are told to trust in Him and lean on Him rather than ourselves. To be honest, that is such a relief, to let God be God, instead of trying to figure things out ourselves and ‘make’ it happen. God’s ways are always best.
We attempted a few times to settle out of court and while I kept the thought in mind that God knows what He is doing, I also wondered if we were going ahead of God to make this adversity go away. Yet, at the same time, I also knew that God would use this, we just didn’t know how.
The lawyers met for their Trial Management Conference in May and each submitted what they would produce as evidence and who they would cross-examine. Deadline to submit everything in writing was June 9th. Our lawyer met that deadline. The next deadline was a week later and that was to submit the evidence into a Joint Book of Documents. Our lawyer met this deadline a day early. The other lawyer did not meet either deadline.
My husband and step-son had to attend the court proceedings 3,000 miles away. This put added strain on the finances but once again, God is faithful as He directed a few of our brethren to help us out with the cost of airfare. I love how God pulls everything together for His beloved children!
On the first day of the trial, we learned that the other lawyer was allowed to introduce her evidence that wasn’t submitted on time. In fact, the Judge made allowances for the cross-examination that we wouldn’t have. By “we”, I mean, my husband and I. That evening, after my husband told me how the day in court went and what the Judge allowed to be included, as I drove to our evening Bible Study, I asked God, why? We did everything correctly, filed everything on time and the other side did not and yet this was going to be allowed. Then I said, Oh God! You know what You’re doing. It’s going to be A-MAAA-ZING!
You see, we are allowed to talk with God about things. I wasn’t upset but I did question Him as to why this was allowed but then, as always, I told God that He is in control and I know that He will work things out. At the Bible Study, we lifted the matter up to God one more time and left it with Him with great expectation for the next day.
When my husband called me the next afternoon, I was almost timid to ask if we won. I didn’t want to be presumptuous but I did want to ‘speak’ faith. As he said Yes, I won!, I could hardly contain myself! I squealed for joy, laughing and crying all at the same time! The weight of the trial is now gone, for good! Praise God! And oh, that evidence that was allowed at the last moment? Worked in our favor!!
The details of the case will remain private but I will tell you that when we brought our case to the Heavenly Judge back in January, we had added to the written Order Sought by our lawyer so all of that was included as we lifted the matter up to heaven. The court order that my husband received was so much more than we asked for! So much more! Even now, as I type these words, tears form. God is so good! That is not just a cliche. He really, truly, IS good!
Heaven’s will has come to earth!
The decision is final, the case is closed, the matter cannot be brought up again. That alone is worth everything.
But God! He has given us so much more than we asked for!
I love God. I love how much He loves us. It is an everlasting love, from the beginning of time to infinity. There are no bounds to His love for us. Sometimes we have the victory here on earth, sometimes it is received in heaven. No matter when it is received, the objective is that our faith mature into a strong faith that when the winds blow, though we may totter a bit, we will not be blown over.
Let me leave you with one more passage that God gave me to stand on. These words actually appeared in 3D in my Bible. I’d never had that happen before. It is amazing. Read this from Isaiah, 42 verses 1-2. I have emphasized the words I want you to grab hold of.
But now thus saith the Lord that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.
You see, it is Scriptural that we would have adversity. But, again, as James said, count it all joy and let patience work itself in you. God is with you. He can be depended on because He is not a man who is there one day and gone the next. He is with you always and forever.
Dear sister, I hope your heart has been encouraged as you read this story. It’s amazing, huh? I absolutely love how God works all things out for those whom He has called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28 is a great verse to remember as well.
So, church, it is time to REJOICE! Take a moment right now and give glory to God for answering prayer and letting His will come from heaven down to the earthly courtroom.
Praise God! Thank you God! All glory to You for who You are! You are faithful and true! You love Your children. Thank you God! Praises to Your Holy Name! Blessings and glory and honor be Thine!
If you haven’t read the related posts linked at the start of this story, you can bookmark them for reading later. They tell the complete story of this adversity.
Sweet sister, would you mind leaving a comment for me? I’d love to hear how this victory has encouraged you.