Joni and Friends Blog
What’s God Doing?
Hi, I’m Joni Eareckson Tada with life’s two biggest questions.
Is it possible? Could there only be two questions you need to answer as a Christian? Well, my friend Paul David Tripp thinks so; he writes, “Perhaps the two most important things you could ask yourself between your conversion to Christ and your resurrection are these two questions: what in the world is God doing right here, right now? And how in the world should I respond to it?”
That’s quite a challenge, but consider it. As a follower of Jesus, aren’t these the two questions you most often ask yourself? Those questions most often arise when you get surprised by a distressing trial: your knee joint goes out; your church goes through a nasty split; your migraines come back; your company moves to another state; or your husband has a stroke; your reputation is slandered; or your bank account is suddenly way out of balance; or maybe the college of your choice turns you down; your son becomes permanently injured in his football game, and the list goes on and on and on. And you think – what in the world is God doing? And after the shock wears off, you ask, “And how am I supposed to respond to this?” Well, friend, if we can get this right – if we can answer these questions in a way that’s wise and helpful – I mean, we’re well on our way to becoming all God wants us to be. It’s why it’s so important that we answer these questions wisely. Because the way you answer determines, in a real way, the character of your faith and the direction of your life. And you’ll be happy to know that you’ve got help with this from the Bible.
The first couple of verses in the book of James help us understand what God is doing right now and how we are supposed to respond. So when the job goes out of state or the migraines return or you need a partial knee replacement, take heed of these words from God. He says in James 1, “Count it all joy when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let [the] steadfastness have its full effect, [and] you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God…but let him ask in faith, with no doubting…blessed is the man who [maintains] steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.”
So. What is God doing? Well, he’s using your difficulties as a tool of grace in your life: shaping, honing, refining, chiseling, strengthening the “who” behind the who God wants you to be. So your trials are not a sign that God has forgotten you; no, they are a reminder that he is committed to help you be all that he wants you to be: patient, humble, trusting, kind to others who hurt, loving and filled with hope. So in light of this, what should your response be? Remain steadfast. You are in a big trial, so don’t give up. Don’t cave in. And do not question God’s goodness. He has a design in mind when it comes to you, and he knows what he’s doing.
Hey, I’d love for you to go deeper in this with me, and so I invite you to visit joniradio.org today, and ask for a free copy of my booklet, “God’s Hand in Our Hardship.” It’ll really help you get grounded in those two key questions about your life: what is God doing and how can you respond as you trust his hand in your hardship. Find out more about that today at joniradio.org, where we love sharing hope in every hardship.
© Joni and Friends
God’s Hand in Our Hardship
Find honest, biblical answers to tough questions about God’s sovereignty. Look at how a gracious and loving God can allow you to suffer, why “good” people have to suffer and how good can come from it.