“All scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
– II Timothy 3:16-17(NIV)
We constantly hear negative things about our elected officials. In fact, criticism of their work is much more common than praise. As we gear up for major elections, we are bombarded with negative ads.
Even though we watch the commercials, read articles, or listen to the news analysts, we can only imagine how a politician would react if they are chosen for the office. They tell us where they stand on important issues. However, we have no way of knowing whether or not they will keep the promises they make when they’re campaigning.
They each tell us that they are equipped for the job. They share information about their education, military service, and why they believe they are better suited for the position.
We do as much research as we can to make an informed decision and head to the polls, praying for the best candidate for our communities. It takes a while for us to realize if we made a wise choice. If the public image they presented to us to gain our vote is a true representation of their character.
Have you ever wondered what would happen if you actually called on one of your elected officials for help?
When we faced a major problem, we realized we were in over our heads and knew that we needed help to get the issue resolved. We were up against a prestigious establishment and needed someone with authority and power on our side.
So, we turned to our local politician. The man who promised to help whenever anyone in his district needed him. The man who promised he would always be available,
Because of his influence, we had support to help us with our fight, within twenty-four hours. His staff went above and beyond to assist us and to check in with us to make sure we had everything we needed.
We were shocked that he became personally involved in our lives – just like he’d promised in his ads during his campaign.
His position allowed us to have access to resources we would not have had access to without him.
Sometimes, living with chronic pain and illness make us feel helpless. When we are in a tough situation, we feel overwhelmed. There are times when we look at our lives and feel powerless.
If we’re not careful, we start to think of ourselves as worthless. When we look at our lives, all we see is our limitations. Physical illness. Broken relationships. Financial lack. Rebellious children. Unemployment.
These things make us believe that we are ineffective and that we can’t be used by God.
We thought our lives would have turned out different. We haven’t reached all of our dreams. Now, our goals seem too far away, simply impossible to accomplish. We sink into depression. Our hearts and minds filled with anxiety.
It’s easy to compare ourselves to others when our lives are complicated by pain and suffering. But doing so paves the way for discouragement to set in.
And when we start comparing ourselves to other people, thinking their lives are much better than ours, we give bitterness and resentment an opportunity to take root in our hearts. Is that really fair?
How many of us have had people judge us based on the way we look? They think that we are fine and that our lives are put together. For those of us living with an invisible illness, our lives do not match our physical appearance. People can never guess or imagine the reality of our daily lives.
However, if we find the courage to share our story and to listen to the stories of others, we will that each one of us carries some type of burden. We may be inspired by them or shudder when we learn the hardships they struggle with daily.
That’s when we realize that even though we struggle we should be thankful to have the lives that we do.
Today’s scripture (II Timothy 3:16-17) tells us why God wants us to be prepared. He trains us for righteous living so that we can spread the Gospel (Matthew 28:18-20). No matter what else is going on in our lives, we always have the ability to tell others about Christ.
Physical limitations should not stop us. We can share what God is doing in our lives and how He strengthens us to endure as we trust Him to care for us and help us (Isaiah 41:10).
If we go through financial difficulties, we can describe how we learned to trust God to provide for us (Philippians 4:19) and to give us peace so we wouldn’t worry (Matthew 6:25-43; Philippians 4:6-7).
Maybe a broken relationship leaves you feeling crushed, lonely, and defeated. But remember God promises to take care of us as members of His family (Psalm 27:10; Mark 3:35; Luke 18:29-30; Revelation 3:19-21).
And, He gives us His word to help us live in victory (John 10:10). The Bible is our measuring stick and guide.
No matter what we are trying to get through, we always have the capability to tell others about Jesus Christ. Paul did it while in prison (Acts 16:16-34; II Timothy 1:8-12) and he tells us that we can do all things through Christ, who strengthens us (Philippians 4:13).
Opportunities are all around us. Ideal conditions or perfect health are not requirements for us to talk about Christ. God works through us when we willingly submit to Him.
Pray for the opportunity to share the Gospel (Colossians 4:3-4).
Prayer: Father, thank You for Jesus, the reason for the Gospel. Give us the courage to share Your message of love and redemption. Help us see ourselves as You see us and let us find joy, peace, and purpose as we go forward. Refresh us. Renew us. Fill us with Your love. In Jesus’ name. Amen.