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Sunday, July 1, 2012

How Do You Respond To Seemingly Impossible Circumstances?

How Do You Respond To Seemingly Impossible Circumstances?

With fear or faith?

King Saul and his son Jonathan illustrate both:

SAUL, panics as he sees his troops deserting him while on a military skirmish as they await the priest's appearance to offer a sacrifice. So Saul steps in and presumptuously assumes the priest's religious duty.

"I saw that the men were scattering." – Frazzled by circumstances.

"I thought, 'Now the Philistines will come down against me… '" – Ruled by fear.

"I felt compelled to offer burnt offerings." – Prompted by emotions.

The consequences? Saul is disenfranchised as king, (and dies a premature death):

"Now your kingdom will not endure; the Lord has sought out a man after his own heart and appointed him leaderbecause you have not kept the Lord's command." (1 Samuel 13:14)

JONATHAN, by contrast, is vastly out-numbered by the Philistine army, yet chooses to believe God to use him in defeating them.

"Come, let's go over to the Philistines" – Scoped out the enemy.

"Perhaps the Lord will act in our behalf" – Made himself available to be used of God.

"Nothing can hinder the Lord from saving, whether by many or by few" – Believed God could use him to destroy the enemy.

The consequences? Jonathan victoriously destroys enemy forces.

SAUL saw challenging circumstances through the eyes of fear and failed.

JONATHAN saw challenging circumstances through the eyes of faith and succeeded. (1 Samuel 13:1-14:23)

QUESTION: When you are faced with difficult circumstances that appear to be overwhelmingly impossible, what do you do? Panic, like Saul and resort to your own solutions? Or do you, like Jonathan trust God, and see Him come through with His solution?

—Facts of the Matter