There was a young man whom we’ll call Alex. He had come out of a very troubled youth: drugs, violence, even some time in jail. But then, through the kindness of a local church member (whom Alex had stolen from), Alex learned about God and gave his heart to Jesus. Though he still had his problems and struggles, and though elements of his past still lingered, Alex was a new person in Jesus. He loved God and sought to express that love by obeying His commandments (1 John 5:1-2). At one point, Alex felt impressed that he should be a minister. Everything pointed to it. He was answering God’s call, no doubt about it.
At college things went well at first. Then one thing after another went awry, and his life began coming apart. His source of money started to dry up; a close friend turned against him, making accusations about him that were false but that damaged his reputation. Next, he kept on getting sick; no one knew what it was, but it impacted his studies to the point where he was afraid that he was going to have to drop out of school completely. On top of it all, he was fighting fierce temptations with drugs, which were readily available in the local community. At one point he even fell in that area. Alex couldn’t understand why all this was happening, especially because he was sure that the Lord had led him to this school to begin with. Was Alex wrong about that? If so, was his whole experience with God a huge mistake? Even the most basic elements of his faith were coming under doubt.
Imagine that, amid this crisis, Alex comes to you and asks for advice. What would you say? What experiences of your own have you had that could help someone like him? What Bible verses would you use? How helpful might the following verses be in such a situation? Proverbs 3:1-35, Jeremiah 29:13, Romans 8:28, 2 Corinthians 12:9, Hebrews 13:5.
|Almost all who follow the Lord have had crises during which they’ve been tempted to doubt the Lord’s leading. The important thing in such situations is to cling to the promises, recount God’s leading in the past, and pray for faith and endurance. The Lord will never give up on us. The question for us is: How do we not succumb to the temptation to give up on Him?|