This week, my social media "Question of the Week" is "Where in Scripture do you turn for reassurance?"
It is not a trick question. I'm not trying to pry into your politics or determine if you are a conservative or liberal theologian. I'm just curious. I grew up in a world that did not push a whole lot of Scripture memorization. I am not great at telling you chapter and verse of where to find specific passages. But I do know the stories of the Bible and a lot of where-to-find-what generally speaking.
But the true topic in this question is reassurance. What is it? How does God's word help you when it is needed? Reassurance is that wonderful experience of comfort in uneasy situations. You may be on the verge of making a major decision. What you need is reassurance that you are choosing wisely. You may be second-guessing a relationship you're in. You need reassurance. You may be feeling the absence of God's love because of some things in your life you know are not the way they should be, like a sinful behavior. You need reassurance, and forgiveness, and to have that sense of being a beloved child of God restored.
This isn't an expose of where to find specific passages. It is a question for you to discern. Where do you go? I once heard a ministry leader say that they tell hurting people such as the hospitalized to read the Psalms. There are many Psalms that can offer hope, but there are also many Psalms that I would never recommend to someone sensing God's absence, especially someone who is experiencing uncontrolled pain. We must be careful of the advice we give to others.
The solution is to solidify what we do know and handle it with care. One thing I used to share with people going through troubling times was the story of Paul on his mission adventures. He faced persecution and mistreatment and even physical pain a lot. He was beaten, imprisoned, jeered, mocked, and more.
Yet this is the same person who was able to put on parchment the letter to the Philippians. What is the central theme of Philippians? Joy. Rejoicing. In the midst of peril and struggles, rejoice. No matter your circumstances, bring from your memory the joy that Christ has instilled in your heart. I would not tell people to simply, "Read Philippians." I would tell Paul's story first and explain his plight of pain. The fact that one who endured such hardships could write such a beautiful letter to remind hurting friends of the joy of Christ is incredible. It is very reassuring.
This is one of my stories. I would love to hear yours! Reply or leave comments and let's begin a conversation.
What situations cause you the most grief in your heart?
What would it look like if you relied on Scriptures to help you through them?
If a friend is struggling, what passage or story from God's word could you use to reassure them?
Who do you know right now that could use this reassurance?
When will you help them?