Last night I was watching The Five on Fox News where Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina was one of their guest hosts.
Scott is one of eleven African-Americans to have served in the U.S. Senate and the first to serve in both chambers of Congress. His rags to riches story that raised him up from poverty to his present position is compelling and inspiring.
When the panel was talking about our current polarizing political divide in the United States, Scott offered an interesting insight. This is nothing new, he observed. Throughout our history, there have been times of conflict and sharp disagreements. “Remember the Civil War?” he rhetorically asked.
His observations reminded me of a statement made by Paul Harvey years ago. “In times like these, it’s helpful to remember that there have always been times like these.”
This is not only true in our country, but it’s true individually. It’s true in our churches. And in our families.
What time or season of life are you in? What are you dealing with? Are you experiencing…
… Heart-wrenching sorrow?
In times like these, it’s good to remember that God knows what you are experiencing. He feels your pain. He cares about your problems. He hears your cry. He wants to help you. And bear your burden.
In times like these, turn to God’s Word for comfort and consolation. For help and hope. For reflection and reassurance. For renewal and revival. Prayerfully consider these ten Bible passages.
1. Psalm 9:9-10
The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.
2. Philippians 4:19
And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.
3. Psalm 32:7-8
You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance. I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.
4. 1 Peter 5:7
Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.
5. Romans 8:18
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.
6. 1 Peter 1 6-7
In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.
7. Joshua 1:9
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
8. Psalm 34:18
The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, And saves such as have a contrite spirit.
9. Romans 8:28
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
10. Ecclesiastes 7:10
Say not, “Why were the former days better than these?” For it is not from wisdom that you ask this.
Getting through a tough time isn’t easy. It calls for all the strength and resolve we can muster. And know this, there are those who are willing to help bear your burden. There is a preacher, a pastor, a friend or brother/sister in Christ who cares. And will provide help and hope. Reach out and find that person.
Finally, be assured that times like these are not forever. There is a brighter day that lies ahead.
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman