A crisis is a time of intense, unexpected difficulty or danger. It can also denote the peak of an illness, after which the sufferer will either recover or die. It is a time when losses may occur, and difficult decisions must be made. It is a time of testing and can even become a time of opportunity. A crisis changes what we once considered normal, sometimes permanently.
Where can we turn for help and comfort when the wolf is at the door, we can’t come together with family and friends, events are completely out of our control, and the crisis bearing down on us is a matter of life and death? How can we cope when there seems to be no help and no end in sight?
Beloved Friends, most important to remember is that even though the sudden appearance of a crisis can shock us, God is never taken by surprise.
Isaiah 46:9-10 describes God’s omniscience this way, “…remember the former things of old; I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose.’”
No matter how dire our circumstances may be, God is always in control, he already has a plan to make a way for us, and he will use every trial we endure to accomplish all the good that he intends to accomplish. When we can see no other source of help available, God is always working behind the scenes for our benefit. “For we walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7).
Because this is always true no matter the circumstances, we can turn to God’s Word to guide and comfort us in times of crisis. The Word of God – contained in the Old and New Testaments – is not like books written by men. Hebrews 4:12 tells us that God’s Word is living and active, and like a surgeon’s scalpel, it pares away our burdens and anxieties. God’s Word brings peace and clarity to our minds and provides guidance to help us cope in all situations.
“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in times of trouble. That is why we are not afraid even when the earth quakes or the mountains topple into the depths of the sea” (Psalm 46:1-2 GW).
“Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (Matthew 6:31-33).
“And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).
“The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open to their cry…When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears and delivers them out of all their troubles” (Psalm 34:15, 17).
“The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me” (2 Corinthians 12:9).
“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:16-18).
“But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness” (Lamentations 3:21-23).
“’The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘therefore I will hope in him.’ The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him” (Lamentations 3:24-25).
“Oh, magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together! I sought the Lord, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears. Those who look to him are radiant, and their faces shall never be ashamed. This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him and saved him out of all his troubles” (Psalm 34:3-6).
“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace.”
“Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you” (Deuteronomy 31:6).
All scriptures are from the English Standard Version translation, unless otherwise noted.