Ever been under tremendous stress in your life? Of course you have. We all have. Sometimes the most difficult thing is watching someone you love be pressed down, crushed under the weight of an ongoing difficulty. I, personally, seem to find this harder than going through something myself. I feel helpless, unable to do anything about it. Well, that’s probably because I am not supposed to do a thing, but God is. Contents Under Pressure, that’s a good thing to have, in many situations, such as in the tires of our cars, or when preserving foods. But how about for us, as humans, is pressure a good things. Well, actually, according to Romans 5, yes it is:
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. 3 And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; 4 and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; 5 and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. (Romans 5:1-5)
Tribulation, in this context, means:
a pressing, pressing together, pressure
oppression, affliction, tribulation, distress, straits.
So, yes, tribulation, or pressure, produces, Perseverance, Proven Character, and a hope that does not disappoint. I’ve got to tell you, though, for me, Pressure sometimes makes me blow a gasket, and the contents I release are none too godly. That happened just this week, and God brought back to me a Scripture that has comforted me many times when I have “blown it.”
20 Indeed, there is not a righteous man on earth who continually does good and who never sins. 21 Also, do not take seriously all words which are spoken, so that you will not hear your servant cursing you. 22 For you also have realized that you likewise have many times cursed others. (Eccl. 7)
I need to remember to be a person of Grace to Others, when they speak something ‘not so gracious.’ Remembering just how ‘Ungracious’ I can be when under pressure, helps me to be more forgiving and gracious, when others are unkind to me. Pressure does a number on each one of us sometimes, and we need the Grace of God extended both to ourselves and others.
6 For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. 8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:6-8) Let us never forget, that it is while we were still rebellious that Christ died for us. While we were still helpless (more feeble, impotent, sick, without strength) Christ died for us. God seems to have to correct me an awful lot. I seem to have wrong, “knee-jerk” responses to things. I am often too quick to judge a situation, then God gently reminds me of the above verse from Ecclesiastes.
Father God, thank you for Your indescribable gift, in providing a way for us to be forgiven, we get it wrong so very often. Help each of us not to ever lose the humility and ability to Remember Your Grace toward us, when others have wrong “knee-jerk” responses to being under pressure. Contents under Pressure is not a fun place to be, but it exposes our weaknesses, so that God can than make us strong in those areas. Thank You Jesus, for Your Love which continually teaches us. Guide us in the way we are to respond others, using Your Example of Love and Forgiveness, as our Inspiration. Teach us to be people of Grace when we find ourselves under pressure, Thank You, Dearest God. Amen and Amen!