– Warren Wiersbe
The Apostle Paul must have had a very busy schedule because in his life he traveled thousands upon thousands of miles and planted dozens of churches but even when he grew tired, he wrote “I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil 3:14). Paul didn’t spend time looking back because he might stumble over what’s in front of him. We too shouldn’t trip over what’s behind us.
The Nearness of Opportunity
When a lady was swimming across the English Channel a few years ago, she gave up in the heavy fog, not being able to see even a 10th of a mile in front of her but when she got into the boat, she could faintly see the shoreline through the fog in the near distance. She said that if she had known she was that close, she would have kept swimming so when it gets tough, keep swimming, even if you’re in a blinding fog. God is using this to grow you.
A tragic and true story took place over a century ago when a man went out to the barn during a blizzard to retrieve some of his chickens so that the family wouldn’t starve to death. The family kept waiting and waiting for him but he never returned. Apparently the man got lost on his way back to the house, which was only about 30 yards away, and froze to death. The mother knew something was wrong but also understood that she dare not go out in the blizzard to look for him, otherwise she would die too and the children would have no parents left at all. The next morning, they found the man just ten feet from his front door. If only he had crawled just a few more feet, he would have found it.
Evil for Good
The Bible is full of stories where God used evil for good and used the evil of others as an opportunity for bringing about great blessings. Joseph was thrown into prison for no reason other than God using evil for good so that many would be saved (Gen 50:20), the first century church was brutally persecuted but this only serviced to speak the gospel throughout Judea, and of course, we need only look at the cross to see who such great evil could be used for such great good (John 3:16).
When you are faced with seemingly insurmountable odds, trust God and He will bring you to the finish line, you may be closer to an opportunity than you think, you might be so very close so don’t quit, and remember that God can use anything and everything (even evil) to bring about much good.