“The wave of temptation may even wash you higher up upon the Rock of ages, so that you cling to it with a firmer grip than you have ever done before, and so again when sin abounds, grace will much more abound.”- Charles Spurgeon
“Trust in the LORD, forever, for the LORD, the LORD himself, is the Rock eternal.”- Isaiah 26:4 (NIV)
In Chapter 11 (“Growing Pains”) of When Your Way Isn’t Working, Kyle Idleman observes that sometimes we talk about the struggles of life only in terms of survival. Instead, God’s Word teaches us to welcome the wave and embrace the struggle.
Like Jesus’ disciples in the first century, Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892) faced intense persecution. Because Charles boldly preached the truth and applied it to the lives of the people around him. In Faith’s Checkbook, Spurgeon shared what it was like to experience that sort of suffering. Those waves of hardship. Spurgeon wrote this at the age of fifty-three:
“The waves rolled in constantly, wave upon wave. I . . . mention this . . . simply to let the reader know that I am no dry-land sailor. I know the roll of the billows, and the rush of the winds. Never were the promises of Jehovah so precious to me as at this hour. Some of them I never understood until now.”
Jesus, Pastor Idleman states, didn’t want his followers to be caught off guard, so He stated clearly that they would encounter trouble. As the Farewell Discourse ends in John 16:33 (NIV), Jesus tells His disciples: “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart, I have overcome the world.”
Finally, Kyle notes, the word trouble in the above passage connotes severity. It’s a word reserved for deep pain, intense struggle, and overwhelming discouragement.
Most significantly, Jesus knows that if unexpected trouble comes, the disciples face disillusionment. And, all too often, disillusionment leads to disconnection. So, when the big waves come, hold onto the safety line of Jesus — and don’t let go!
Today’s question: What Bible verses help you cling to Jesus through the wave of temptation? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Expectant in the trouble”