In my walk with the Lord for over five decades, I had experienced His immediate deliverance from grave dangers quite a few times. Here are a couple of examples.
My family and I had escaped serious injuries or even death when the car I drove had been involved in a collision with a truck on a dark night. When it happened, my wife and I had time only to shout, “Jesus!” We came out of it without a scratch. Pastor Pacer was only a toddler but he was totally fine.
My first overseas healing crusade took place in General Santos City, Philippines. Upon arrival at Freedom Park where the crusade was held, all the participating pastors were under the platform and not on it. I was taken aback and knew something was seriously amiss.
Then a pastor rushed towards me to warn me of the danger ahead. Standing out in the crowd was a big group of men who wore a white band around their heads. There were sharp objects and bottles scattered on the ground around them.
Apparently, the last Christian meeting in that place was conducted by an American evangelist who managed to escape unharmed when the same mob tried to harm him. They had deep-seated hatred for Christians.
In fear, I gathered all the pastors to kneel with me and cry unto God for help or we would be done for.
To cut a long story short, as I got up from my knees, the fear was gone. I knew that the only strategy that could save me was to demonstrate God’s power as soon as possible. To preach a long message would be sheer folly. So I boldly declared to them that my God is able to save, heal and deliver, and I quickly invited them to come forward and receive their healing.
Many responded and I immediately cried to God to touch them. One of the first to be healed was the leader of the mob who was healed of a broken arm. That saved the day for us. I could tell you more of such immediate deliverances from grave troubles.
However, in most cases when the urgency isn’t that critical, the Lord often walks us through and helps us navigate out of the maze of complicated problems which we probably have created.
Psalm 23:4 (KJV)
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
Should you be in such a hard place and there is no immediate deliverance, it doesn’t mean God has forsaken you for whatever unknown reason. Of course the devil wants you to believe that. Just reject it in Jesus’ name.
Even if you are spiritually underdeveloped, it’s not too late to draw closer to Christ. Perhaps even this adversity will work out for your greater good: the motivation to strengthen and build up your inner spirit. This will put you in good stead through this life and into eternity.
Even if the adversity is self-invited, so long as you acknowledge it, repent and draw close to Him, He will not reject you. The full forgiveness of the prodigal son by his father should be a tremendous encouragement to us. He forgives fully and freely.
How utterly disrespectful the prodigal son had been to his loving father! Yet as soon as he realised his folly and drew near to his father, he was fully accepted with no questions asked. This assurance is found in many passages of the Bible. So just repent and draw near to Him and He will respond to you in like manner.
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
Although God longs to get us out of trouble and pain soonest possible, however, vital lessons are better learned and character can only be forged through tough times, especially when we go through them all with the Shepherd of our souls.
Hence, no believer is exempted from trouble. As we allow Christ to walk us through the dark valleys, we eventually learn to avoid self-invited troubles.
As the salt and light of this world, we should be part of humanity’s solutions and not part of their problems. Again, this can be best learned as we willingly allow Christ to walk us through the darkest valley and we continue to follow Him closely.
This precious experience with Christ will also mature and equip us for His service. Only those who have gone through a fiery tribulation triumphantly are able to comfort and inspire those in similar circumstances.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (KJV)
Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort;
Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.
One last word to those who are presently going through the dark valley experience with Christ. You are not out of it yet but you will. He has promised to walk you out of it.
Be sensitive to the Lord’s presence for He is there to strengthen you; He is your Rock and Savior, and He will lead you out of darkness and into the sunshine where you’ll walk with Jesus beside still, quiet waters (Psalm 23:2).
But the salvation of the righteous is from the Lord;
He is their strength in the time of trouble.
Commit your way to the Lord,
Trust also in Him,
And He shall bring it to pass.