Romans 8

Ah, those predicaments . . . life is full of them. Often they are of our own making. Other times they just seem to happen mysteriously to us. Occasionally, predicaments are comical or borderline crazy. Sometimes they can be irritating and troublesome. But one thing is for sure: Predicaments are unpredictable. And embarrassing. And confusing. And really weird.

Like the time I was leading a Bible study at a church I’d never attended before. Shortly after getting underway, I noticed two people (latecomers) standing at the door, reluctant to join us. The woman was much older than the man, so I paused, looked in their direction, and welcomed them to join our group, saying, “Why don’t you and your mother pull up a chair and join us?” Well, you could’ve heard a pin drop. Too late I realized my mistake. She was his wife! Throughout the first part of the session (which seemed like an eternity), I felt like dead meat, and they glared at me like a couple of circling buzzards. When we took a coffee break, they were out of there.

At times like this, I find a measure of relief in knowing that Scripture records one predicament after another. Can you imagine how Peter felt immediately after he had deliberately denied the Lord for the third time . . . then heard that ominous cock crowing in the distance? Talk about embarrassing.

And what about Daniel, who refused to obey the injunction of King Darius. Though Daniel continued to obey God, he wound up spending the night in a den of lions. Talk about confusing!

And who can forget David’s inexplicable actions when he fled from Saul and found himself in enemy territory and “disguised his sanity . . . and acted insanely in their hands, and scribbled on the doors of the gate, and let his saliva run down into his beard”(1 Sam. 21:13). Talk about weird!

I’m comforted when I realize that God is in sovereign control of all of life. He not only knows the times and the seasons; He is also Lord of the unexpected and the unpredictable. Our times and our trials are in His hands. Even when we feel embarrassed or confused or do something really weird.

Whether we’re on cloud nine, enjoying His blessings, or caught in the thicket of some tangled predicament, He hasn’t let us go. By His grace, He remains “for us” (Rom. 8:31).

Remember, He is the God of your soaring spirits as well as your perplexing predicaments.

Taken from Day by Day with Charles Swindoll by Charles R. Swindoll. Copyright © 2000 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. Used by permission of Thomas Nelson.

Posted in Christian Living and tagged .

Accuracy, clarity, and practicality all describe the Bible-teaching ministry of Charles R. Swindoll. Chuck is the chairman of the board at Insight for Living and the chancellor of Dallas Theological Seminary. Chuck also serves as the senior pastor of Stonebriar Community Church in Frisco, Texas, where he is able to do what he loves most—teach the Bible to willing hearts. His focus on practical Bible application has been heard on the Insight for Living radio broadcast since 1979.