by John Paul Jackson
A friend of mine, Isaac, had to walk through a very difficult experience. His house burned down, and because of the type of fire and the surrounding circumstances, the fire department temporarily suspected arson. If they could have proved it, Isaac would have gone to prison for 20 years.
I know Isaac and what an impossibility that was. He would never do anything like that. I asked him one day if he was nervous about the possibility of prison, and he replied, “No, I’m not nervous about going to prison at all. I am concerned about one thing, though.”
“What’s that?” I asked.
“What is it in me that allowed them to think that I could do this? Because that is what God is trying to get at in my life. If it’s worth me going to prison, falsely accused, over that issue, then blessed be the name of the Lord. If it’s worth it to Him, then it’s worth it to me.”
You Are Where You Are for a Reason
Isaac was later exonerated, but I never forgot that response. You see, the issue isn’t so much that the enemy’s attacking you; it is that God is allowing it — and why. When we understand the ways of God, we realize, God allowed this because of issues in me. He had to get rid of my stubbornness and pride, my arrogance and self-sufficiency. I had to learn to put my future in His hands, and that’s why God allowed this to happen. Maybe I could have gotten to this understanding more easily—but I couldn’t have the way I was. God allowed me to fulfill His plan with my personality intact, and He reshaped me.
The enemy might have meant it for evil, but God meant it for good. And if God meant it for good, what have we to fear?
Many of us are being reshaped by God. It can certainly hurt; it often does, but it’s a wonderful thing. When we look back at what has happened to us, it’s like looking at somebody else’s life. We think, Wow! Who was I back there? I can’t believe all that God has done in me since that time. That was an entirely different person! And it really was.
God has planted the seed of our destiny inside of us, and we need to be able to say, “I will become that.” There are things you are going to do in life that you have no clue you’re going to do. If they were told to you today, you’d say, “No way! That couldn’t possibly be me! That’s amazing.” But yes, it could be you, and it will be you. We have to dare to believe that God wants to use us like that. Perhaps He will lead us through difficult times. Perhaps we will wind up in places we never thought we’d go. Perhaps life will be very different than what we expected. But remember this: Everything that happens to us is because God has a plan and a place for us. Nothing happens outside of His will. He will do anything to get us to our purpose, and if the difficulty is worth it to Him, then by all means, it should be worth it to us, the beneficiaries of His promises.
© 2007 John Paul Jackson, Streams Ministries International. All rights reserved. www.streamsministries.com.