Lenten Prayer: Week 4 – Embracing Your Purpose through Difficulty, Hardship and Adversity
This is the 4th week of the Lent Season and we want to take a look at going through adversity, hardship and difficulty as we embrace our purpose.
When things get tough in our Christian life in order to continue and not grow weary in well doing it is important to know our purpose. Why are you here? What is the meaning of your life? What is your purpose? Why did God create you?
Regardless of what you think, you are not an accident or an afterthought or a mistake (Psalm 139:14) “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”
Your purpose was determined by God before you were born. You may not have known what it is but once you came into a saving relationship with the Lord Jesus your journey began in finding your purpose and fulfilling it.
You were gifted by God with spiritual gifts which are made available to you to be used for His glory in your purpose. (Ephesians 1:3,11) “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ. In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will…”
Just as God had His eye on your from birth so did the enemy of your soul, the devil. The enemy’s job is to get you off track and cause you to abort the purpose for which you were created. Please note that the enemy cannot abort the plan so what he does is he causes YOU to abort it.
How does he do this? Through doubt, fear, rejection by others, adversity, difficulty, hardship, obstacles or tempting you with other “stuff”. You name it, he tries everything to get you to give up on God’s plan for your life.
This 4th week of the Lenten Season reflect and meditate upon all the obstacles and persecution that Christ himself faced as He was getting ready to fulfill His purpose.
He came to die for our sins so that we could be washed clean of our sins and come into full communion with the Father. (Matthew 26:28) “For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”
While the enemy has been watching you, as he watched Jesus from the beginning, he really does not know the purpose and plan for your life. Why? Because he is not omniscient (all knowing), only God is Omniscient. But watching the path you take, your habits, your proclivity he can surmise what it may be.
The enemy’s plot when looking at Jesus was first to tempt him with all the things of the world so that nothing happened (remember he didn’t really know why Jesus came) or if he couldn’t stop him then he would just kill him! Which in retrospect was the plan of God the entire time!
Do you really think the enemy would have push Jesus to the cross if he knew that mankind through this sacrifice would be reconciled to God? No he wouldn’t. He would have done everything in his power to stop it!
Likewise when it comes to your life, the enemy doesn’t know the plan so he has to distract you from God’s purpose, push you to abort it, cause you to step completely out of time or try to kill you.
Everything has a time and season when they need to occur so waiting until God says ‘the time is now” is just as important in fulfilling your purpose.
(Luke 22:1-6 NKJV)”Now the Feast of Unleavened Bread drew near, which is called Passover. And the chief priests and the scribes sought how they might kill Him, for they feared the people.
Then Satan entered Judas, surnamed Iscariot, who was numbered among the twelve. So he went his way and conferred with the chief priests and captains, how he might betray Him to them. And they were glad, and agreed to give him money. So he promised and sought opportunity to betray Him to them in the absence of the multitude.”
So we see that there is a plot to kill Jesus and the one orchestrating his death is one of is very own disciples.
You may have at some point faced adversity from your own family member whether it be natural or spiritual.
During these moments think about how Jesus handled His adversary and the plot against his own life.
What would your life look like 5 years from now if you were to continue stepping forward to fulfill your purpose in the midst of adversity? Even in this century where the obstacles look a little different i.e. society, culture, technology and the media, would you be willing to continue along the path that God has laid out for you?
Would you be willing to sacrifice everything to do what God has purposed for you? This is what Jesus says to you
(Luke 9:23) “Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.”
Prayer when Facing Adversity, Difficulty and Hardship
Lord Jesus during this Lenten Season, as we reflect on your journey to the cross to fulfill your purpose, let us also reflect on our own journey. Purify our heart and mind so that we will remain focused on you. We pray for grace to pick our cross daily and follow you. You never said this journey would be easy but you did say that you would be with us even until the end of the age when we go into all the earth preaching your gospel. Give us grace to walk through the difficulty, hardship and adversities that we will face. Strengthen our feeble hands. Refresh our mind with the purpose that you have for us individually. Bind the hand of the enemy from causing us to abort our purpose. Put peace within our hearts despite the environment to follow through on our calling. Make us aware of our spiritual giftedness in this season, in Jesus Name, Amen