The Afflictions of the Righteous
Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the Lord delivereth him out of them all. ~Psalm 34:19
One of the oldest questions that has bothered people for many years is, “why do bad things happen to good people?” I have a few church members who are going through back-to-back difficulties. They are godly people who love the Lord, love His Word, love His church, pray, and are active witnesses of the gospel. Even though they have not said anything to me that would lead to believe they are questioning God, I can’t help but think that the thought has crossed their mind, “why is all this happening me?” David gives us wisdom and insight about the afflictions God puts in our lives.
We see the nature.
The word for afflictions means evil, adversity, trouble, sore, distress, and misery. It is a powerful word that indicates a person is going through a grievous and heavy time. Afflictions are the fiery trials God allows in our life. They are the heavy burdens we have to carry. They cause us fear. They cause us anxiety. They weigh heavily on our minds and spirit. They are distracting and rob us of happiness and peace of mind. They are personal in nature and unique to each person.
We see the number.
David said, “many are the afflictions”. We will experience more than one affliction during our lifetime. It is likely we can have more than one affliction going on at the same time. David experienced doubts, fear, hatred, loneliness, rejection, threatening, and worry. James said we will “fall into divers temptations”. This means they will be different, many, and unique to us. When we have afflictions, we are under immense pressure and desperate for relief and help.
We see the necessity.
Afflictions move us to prayer. They are God’s means to make us pray with urgency. We learn to pray with more effectiveness. We draw closer to God through prayer. Afflictions teach us to have faith in God. We must trust in the Lord for our strength and the eventual outcome. Afflictions move us to contriteness and confession of sin. Like refiner’s fire that burns away dross off of silver, the fires of affliction burn away sin deeply embedded in our hearts. Afflictions teach us to pray for God’s wisdom. We need wisdom to know what lessons God is trying to teach us. Afflictions teach us that God’s grace is sufficient for us.
We see the nullifying.
“The Lord delivereth him out of them all.” God’s deliverance through every affliction is His promise to those who live in righteousness. God has a time limit for every affliction. God enables us to endure the affliction. He gives us peace in the midst of the storm. He takes away the worry. He uses the deliverance to bring Him glory. He is giving us grace through the fire. He doesn’t leave us lingering, but at the right moment He extracts us out of the trouble. The afflictions of the righteous are building blocks for our spiritual maturity. Rejoice today that God has a purpose and gives us power to see us through each and every affliction.
Have an enabled God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Deuteronomy 24-27