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Pointers along the way #39

Many Ebenezers to strengthen us
- Jacob Ninan

A thought that most commonly comes to us is that no one else has had it as bad as we! Even when we know in our mind that this is not true we feel as if it is. But let us not go by how we feel but what is true.

1. Of course we know how many others are in worse conditions. We will see this when we start thinking about it objectively. Let us, as the song says, start counting our blessings and see what the Lord has done. My favourite position at this point is to remember the bottom line - that the Lord has forgiven my sins and made me His own, while billions of others do not know Him at all.

2. Many times earlier in our own lives we have felt like this and then the Lord has brought us out and taken us forward. This time too He will do it.

3. Many others have gone through tougher situations and experienced the love and power of God through them all. They have come out of them as better persons and more useful to God and men.

4. There are many, many promises for just such situations, as "I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you" (He.13:5), "I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you" (Jn.14:18), "And my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus" (Php.4:19), "For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus" (Php.1:6), "Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you" (Mt.7:7), etc.

When God gave the people of Israel a miraculous victory over the Philistines, the prophet Samuel took a stone, placed it before them and called it 'Ebenezer.' When they faced a difficult time in the future they were to look at that stone and remember, "Thus far the Lord has helped us" (1Sa.7:12). If we look back at the way the Lord has taken care of us and the others in the past, we shall have many Ebenezers to strengthen our faith. And, of course, the greatest Ebenezer is Jesus being raised from the dead - from a state of hopelessness and despair to one of triumph, glory and hope for ever afterwards.