I confess, I’ve had an ongoing love affair with Banner of Truth books for the past 20 years. So, when I found this 30-page booklet on a subject dear to my heart–suffering–and God’s providential hand in, through, above, and around suffering–I grabbed it. It’s rich with biblical counsel for those who suffer and those who minister to fellow sufferers, which, come to think of it, includes every one of us. Here are a few of the gems that are highlighted in yellow in my copy of this helpful resource written by John J. Murray.
Providence is that marvellous working of God by which all the events and happenings in his universe accomplish the purpose he has in mind.
When adversity comes into our lives we tend to react in one of two ways. We may say that it is from a source other than God and he has no power to stop it; or we may say it is an evidence of God’s anger against us. Either way we are guilty of casting aspersions on the character of our Father and consequently of perverting our attitude to him.
The impression is given that the purpose of the Christian life is enjoyment. Everything that stands in the way of that is to be eliminated. People are looking for a problem-free Christianity. The health, wealth and success gospel is having a field day. Purveyors of such a gospel look the part. Unfortunately, the hollowness of such views becomes apparent when suffering, sorrow or disappointment comes. Then it becomes clear that we need a faith that is grounded in God’s Word.
God is sitting as a refiner of gold. He wants to bring out the pure gold of naked trust in himself. When all the dross of self-trust is purged out then faith will be to the praise, honour and glory of Jesus Christ.
One of the most difficult things to do when the road is rough or when the billows are passing over us is to feel that God still loves us. It is the last thing we can accept. But we are not called to feel; we are called to believe.
Get your copy of Behind a Frowning Providence here.