Unity In Trials
Should it come as a surprise when we go through trials, especially prior to the Feast of Tabernacles? Sometimes we may experience “heavier” trials, perhaps having the feeling of being alone, that there is nobody out there who can help or comfort us. It’s quite normal to have that feeling at times but we need to understand that EVERYONE goes through trials and EVERYONE suffers in their own way. We go through trials for the purpose of our individual course towards perfection.
These particular tests affect each and every one of us. Not all trials are the same for each of us. Our responses and reactions, our strength and our faith are always being tested. Do we pray to God when we are facing difficulties, asking Him to give us strength through His Holy Spirit? Or is it in the back of our minds, not valued as important enough? Is prayer just something we do when we have the time for it, when it’s convenient, sometimes even forgetting to pray altogether? Do NOT neglect the power of prayer for anything, because, as Paul says in Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
But we are human and we still think like humans, process thoughts by using our carnal minds, and at times give in to sin. We can quickly change that way of thinking because we have something the people of this world don’t have who have not been called by God. We have the power of the Holy Spirit that we received during our baptism! God’s Holy Spirit helps us distinguish between right and wrong, which is why it is important to pray to God to grant us more of His Spirit when we are going through difficulties, and why it is so important to replenish it daily.
We shouldn’t be afraid when we go through trials, but it’s never a bad thing to ask ourselves why we may be going through certain trials. Isaiah 41:10 tells us, “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” And 2 Timothy 1:7 continues on saying, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
David understood this, and he also faced many difficult trials. He pleaded with God with fasting and prayer and knew that he had to change. He was not too proud to admit that he sinned when he recognized it and bitterly repented. He was still punished, but God accepted his repentance and he was forgiven. After all, he was a man after God’s own heart. His heart was in the right place. He loved God’s law and he received strength from God. He didn’t have anything to fear since his absolute faith was in God (compare Psalms 27:1; 118:6).
Our trials may be different from other’s trials, but we all go through trials for we are ALL being tested. And that is why we pray for and comfort one another, because we are never alone. It’s a unified effort!
Just as our beliefs and what we preach is unified, we then are to speak the same thing, agree that there are no divisions, be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment (1 Corinthians 1:10). We need to be of one mind (1 Peter 3:8). Romans 12:16 adds that we need to be of the same mind toward one another and not be wise in our own opinion. If we think that we can make it on our own, saying that we don’t need the church or the ministry, don’t need to keep God’s law and just do what we believe is correct in our own eyes, we will fail. Where do we put our trust? Proverbs 3:5-6 gives us the answer.
Yes, God will direct our paths, but God also provides help because we are not alone. Who can understand the Bible without direction, explanation and guidance? God provides help for the purpose of teaching (compare Ephesians 4:11-13; Acts 20:28). We are to be helped by the ministry because we have a work to do. But we need to be of one mind. How can two walk together unless they are agreed? (Amos 3:3).
To be truly unified we also must have humility (Philippians 2:1-8), we must have peace (Ephesians 4:3) and we must have love, which is the bond of perfection (Colossians 3:14). Are we doing enough?
We ALL go through various trials. Through unity of like mind, we receive strength and comfort from God and our brethren (2 Corinthians 1:3-4). We must allow God to help us when we go through difficult times. We must not take Him for granted nor His Church nor all the things that He has given us. Rather, we need to really think about what His purpose is for us. Why are we here? What are we commissioned to do? We ALL have a part—individually and as a whole.