Trials of life. We all go through them in some way, shape and form. Here I will focus on dealing with a particular type of testing – accusations.
Accused? Spoken of behind your back while they smiled in your face? Feeling alone? The prayer might be “LORD, I don’t understand why this is happening! Help me!” I know, because I have been through that more than once in recent times. I didn’t see it coming. I had no warning in a dream from the Almighty (although He can and does sometimes forewarn us of some situations). One day, I was told “this has come up..” My actions and character were being called into question. Some things didn’t make sense. Some things didn’t add up. But they were there – accusations. Yet God was there also.
I was reminded by our faithful, all-wise, all-knowing Redeemer, that there are things He allows us to go through for our good, whilst satan wants them to be for our downfall. There is no way that the Almighty Creator, Maker of the heavens and the earth, our personal Saviour, would just let His sons and daughters go through such trials for no reason. Maybe there is some pride in us to be addressed. Maybe we just needed to be reminded of this:-
For it has been given to you on Christ’s behalf not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for HimPhilippians 1:29, the Bible
If any of the accusations are true, or partly true, then we need to seek God’s forgiveness and correction. Yet maybe those accusations are grossly exaggerated, or just don’t make sense. Again, seek God. We can be offended and then build a wall around ourselves to protect ourselves from ever being accused again. Or we can ask God to bring something good out of the situation for His glory, which is what He wants to do anyway! The ‘accuser of the brethren’ satan wants us to be discouraged, wants us to be offended and lick our wounds in a corner whilst feeling sorry for ourselves, and wants us to cut ourselves off from relationships and growth, but what does the LORD want? Do we forget that our God is not surprised about the situation we face, as though He was busy elsewhere and He suddenly realised our situation when we said “LORD, what’s going on??!”
Consider Joseph’s life, one of the twelve sons of Jacob, God’s servant in ancient times. When Joseph’s brothers resented him, and plotted to get rid of him, was God unaware? Did God just “let it happen” somewhat indifferently? By no means! In fact, as this true story tells us, in God’s word the Bible:-
As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.Genesis 50:20, the Bible
Joseph had a couple of dreams. Those dreams gave indication that Joseph would be in an exalted position over his brothers. Joseph was seventeen years old, and not yet of a mature mindset. He was also the favourite son of Jacob. His brothers hated him, and even more so when he quite rashly told them of his dreams. They reacted against him. The resentment that built up in their hearts found a way of expression, to plan to get rid of their younger brother. Yes their attitudes were sinful. Yes resentment is wrong, hatred is wrong, murderous planning is wrong, so wrong. Yet God used their sinful reactions for good! The Almighty intervened in a series of circumstances, which not only kept Joseph alive, but took him through some situations that would ultimately get him to the exalted position that God had fore-ordained, which would help Joseph’s family in the end. On the way to that ultimate God-ordained position, Joseph was in prison, then when freed and given a trusted position, was accused by his employer’s wife of sexual advances when he actually ran from her!
Sometimes we ourselves are experiencing the consequences of someone else’s sinful reactions to us. Sometimes difficulties may happen ‘one after the other’ in our lives. We may have a period of not much happening, then… wham! Yet whilst satan indeed wants us to be discouraged, derailed and defeated, that is NOT our God’s plan!
For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.1 John 5:4, the Bible
My experiences are quite different to Joseph’s, obviously. I simply wanted to give a Biblical example of how we can find ourselves in difficult situations that God is using to shape our character for a higher purpose, for good – and how we can sometimes lose sight of that in the trial itself. However, if we would train our minds by meditating on God’s word consistently and steadfastly, prayerfully seeking to honour Jesus and be active witnesses of His goodness, the Spirit of God who is our holy Counsellor will help us through the trial to the other side.
If any individual reading this has not quite submitted their lives to Christ Jesus, I appeal that doing so would be the most important choice of your life. He is God revealed in human flesh, who came to suffer on behalf of sinners to reconcile us to God our Maker. He is truly qualified to lead us through the trials of life in victory, having overcome sin and death for us. He gives us the strength we need, and will faithfully lead us into a glorious eternity, after we have suffered a little while through whatever trials God allows for our good.