Do you feel trapped? Stuck in your circumstances? Unsure of what to do next?
Does life feel hard? Do the days seem long?
Two years have passed since:
A group of Jews got together and bound themselves with an oath not to eat or drink until they had killed Paul.Acts 23:12
Nothing much has changed. Oh, there’s a new Governor, but Festus didn’t know what to do with Paul any more than Felix did . . . so Paul remained in prison and the Jews still want him dead.
The leading priests and other Jewish leaders met with him and made their accusations against Paul. They asked Festus as a favor to transfer Paul to Jerusalem (planning to ambush and kill him on the way).Acts 25:2–3
The Jews still wanted to kill him and the Roman officials still had no idea what to do with him and God was at work.
Paul used every opportunity, every place and event, to proclaim the message of Jesus. Kings, soldiers, citizens, and other prisoners . . . all heard about God’s saving grace and love. I’m sure life was hard and I imagine there were days that felt really long but Paul remained focused on the mission God had given him.
Take my message to the Gentiles and to kings, as well as to the people of Israel.Acts 9:15
I’m guessing the hard long days in prison didn’t surprise him.
I will show him how much he must suffer for my name’s sake.Acts 9:16
And we shouldn’t be surprised when life is long and hard either. Paul wrote:
The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, He will show you a way out so that you can endure.1 Corinthians 10:13
Life can be hard and the days can be long . . . but you and I know and love the One who has overcome the world and we have His message of truth and love to share.
I’ve experienced long hard days imprisoned by fear and anxiety. I’ve sought help and I believe that’s important. But I also want to tell you that it has been important for me to share the message God has given me. It helps me to tell people what the Lord has done for me. It is important for me to share His love, show His compassion and kindness, and lift people up with the encouragement He gives.
Because when I focus on Jesus and on the people He places around me, when I count my blessings . . . I see the One who has overcome the world. I have victory in Jesus.
A Prayer for Victory When Life is Hard and Days are Long
Lord, I need You. It’s easy to focus my thoughts on the hard parts of my life . . .to see what’s wrong, what’s missing, what’s unchanging, what makes me afraid. And sometimes I wake up and the struggle feels long and I wonder if it will ever end.
The enemy is constantly at work tempting me with fear, anxiety, division, and countless other things that try to distract me and keep me from remembering all I have in You. Please help me remember that You are and will always be King of kings and Lord of lords. However my life looks today, I am safe in Your love. Whatever I’m afraid of tomorrow, my future is secure because You are Victorious.
I surrender today to You. Please help me cling to Your promises. Hold me close. Fill me with Your peace. Give me everything I need to trust and follow Your perfect plans for me. Help me fulfill Your purposes as I put my hope in You. When life is hard and days are long give me J-O-Y by sharing Your love and encouraging others. Help me live this day for Your glory. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
If you feel trapped today in a prison of your own making or if, like Paul, your prison was caused by someone else’s lies or accusations . . . know that Jesus is with you and He will give you everything you need to live in victory and share His love out loud.
On today’s note write:
Jesus gives me victory when life is hard and the days are long.
May God be with you and give you victory in Jesus.
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