Today’s passage says this: “Hear the word of the Lord, you Israelites, because the Lord has a charge to bring against you who live in the land: “There is no faithfulness, no love, no acknowledgment of God in the land. There is only cursing, lying and murder, stealing and adultery; they break all bounds,and bloodshed follows bloodshed. Because of this the land dries up,… and all who live in it waste away; the beasts of the field, the birds in the sky and the fish in the sea are swept away.”
When we read these verses, don’t we recognise our own planet, our societies of today? My friend, here God explains the reasons His people are suffering: their lawless behaviour had brought consequences such as increased violence and ecological crisis. This is the first reason that could bring sufferings in our lives: our attitude, our behaviour. The second way to consider our sufferings is that God may have a bigger picture to glorify His name behind them as recalled on this passage about the blind man : “As Jesus was passing by, He saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked Him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but this happened that the works of God would be displayed in him” (John 9:1-3).
My brother, my sister, if there is not always a direct cause and effect relationship between our actions and the problems we face, nevertheless, when we are facing difficulties, we should seriously ask ourselves if we have done something sinful or irresponsible that has caused our sufferings. If we find out that we are at fault even partially, we must change our ways before God will help us: “if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land” (2 Chronicles 7:14). The problem with many people is that they like to look for a scapegoat or blame others instead of looking into themselves first. My friend, God will never blame you for someone else’s sin or irresponsible ways… but only for the part you played when facing that person’s sin or behaviour…
Now, if we have done nothing that could have caused our sufferings, we should, therefore, set our faith on these reassuring words of the Lord: “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9). Let me be clear here that this Scripture is for those who have truly returned to the Lord because many believers call on this grace while they refuse to repent! Stay blessed in Jesus’ name.