Somewhere Between the Sword & the Angel
I recently studied Acts 12 for a Bible study and was struck by the two extremes for Peter and James in deliverance from their current trial. Both were delivered, but with different outcomes.
James was taken from this life and brought into the presence of His Savior. For a believer, this is a day for which we all yearn. We ache for the Lord to take us home, for we long to be in His presence. To see our Savior face to face and to spend eternity in the light of His presence.
For Peter, he was delivered from his trial by a miraculous escape from prison, as God sent an angel to do the impossible. One doesn’t escape by chance or human power from the depths of a prison, chained between two guards, with a total of sixteen soldiers guarding you.
Both James and Peter obeyed God and both were delivered by the great power and love of God.
Yet, there is a third scenario. What about those times between the sword and the angel?
What about those times where we are languishing away and wrestling through a trial? What do we do then?
What do we do when there is no hope in sight? When the deliverance doesn’t come, when the pain continues without relenting?
When evil is gloating and it seems God has forgotten about us, what do we do? Where do we turn? Where does our help come from?
This is another set of questions I am wrestling with as I watch my dreams burn.
Why doesn’t the Lord just take me home to be with Him? Or, where is the angel to free me from this prison of a trial I am going through?
To be honest, I don’t have any human explanations or answers to these questions. The time between the sword and the angel is beyond human reasoning and understanding.
This is why I have to, I HAVE TO, look beyond my self and my circumstances to the unchanging, eternal Word of God.
God has promised me that He works all things out for my good, as one of those whom He has called to Himself according to His good purpose. (Romans 8:28)
Do I feel like it is true? Nope, not at all. Yet, as I have said before and I will say again, as Christians, we don’t live by what we feel, we live by what we know to be true.
Jesus hasn’t promised me a care-free life, on the contrary, He promised me exactly what He experienced on this earth, suffering, persecution and hatred by the world. Jesus was very clear that if He was persecuted, I would be persecuted also. He said if He was hated, I was going to be hated as well. (John 15:18-21)
If Jesus, the most loving and truthful person ever, was brutally hated and opposed, how can I expect anything less as I seek to follow Him?
Is this truth easy to swallow? No, rather it is very hard to swallow. Yet, this world isn’t my home and I’m fighting for eternal souls, not a prestigious career, money, fame, power, family or friends. I’m here for Jesus and His glory. Period.
If that offends the world and puts me in the direct line of their hatred, so be it. By the grace and power of Almighty God, I will not back down in living and loving for my Savior. His approval is all that ultimately matters and God give me the grace, I will live that statement.
So may I remain faithful to Him, as I wait for His deliverance.
Come sword or angel, I am the King’s and I will live for none other, so help me God.
No, this is not easy, but my power comes from God Almighty and He is more than able.
“I will lift up my eyes to the hills. Where does my help come from? My help comes from Yahweh, who made heaven and earth.” - Psalm 121:1-2