By Mike Gilland
It seems to be happening more often than ever before…the phone rings, and I’m suddenly hearing a report that takes my breath away. And not in a good way either, for it is news of a dear friend that is suddenly facing a life-changing diagnosis, or some other formidable obstacle. It is one thing to read about or hear of people going through desperate times, but when it is someone in your family or a friend that is very close to you, it suddenly becomes painstakingly real. And it is never easy.
Such is our life. In fact, Jesus promised us that we would face many difficult trials, including persecution due to our faith in Him. Suffering is part of living. Not a part that we enjoy, or happily anticipate, but suffer we will. Such times teach us about our life as believers in a very unique way.
How do we respond in these moments? How does our faith in the Lord inform our hearts when we are in the middle of such a crisis?
I have found Psalm 112 to be an immense help in guiding me in these moments. The first six verses describe a righteous man, who believes and trusts in God and delights in His commandments. Several great promises about such a person’s life are given in these verses. But verse 7 is the focal point for this post. It is the verse that helps me when I receive such a call. It is a trustworthy verse, worthy of memorization. Here it is, from the ESV:
“He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, trusting in the Lord.”
–Psalm 112:7 ESV
What hope – I can respond to bad news and not fear, trusting in the Lord, knowing that He is holding my heart. I may be facing a crisis, but I am not facing it alone. He is there. And the disposition of my heart while in the battle? The Lord wants me to simply trust Him.
My sincere hope is that you are not having to face such circumstances today. But if you are having to do that very thing, take hope – and begin to meditate on this verse. It is like good medicine for the soul. He is firmly holding your heart.
Mike Gilland is Operations Manager for The Shepherd Radio Network, a group of radio stations in Florida that features the “Christian Teach/Talk” format. Mike hosts a daily talk radio show in the 2 PM hour called “Afternoons with Mike”, talking to local pastors and newsmakers. In Orlando, The Shepherd is heard on WIWA, AM 1270. In addition to his broadcast experience, Mike spent 36 years in full-time ministry as a pastor and worship leader. As a guitarist, Mike performs at concerts, restaurants, private parties, etc. He is married to Cindy, the father of four grown children and grandfather to seven grandchildren.