We all go through ‘storms’ in life. For the most part, they arrive without notice and catch us completely off-guard. We can go from one ordinary day to our world flipped upside down within minutes. Other times, it may not be so sudden but after a while, we look at our lives and wonder how we went from such a good life to so much misery. We may have different ways of dealing with life’s challenges but the Word of God gives an effective approach to take when faced with adversity. By examining the experiences of four personalities in the Bible, we can see how to overcome our own life storms.
This Book presents an analysis of the lives of the following Bible personalities:
The challenge most prominent in Joseph’s life was the emotional pain he endured. The root cause of his suffering was his brothers’ jealousy; their actions caused him more distress than they ever could have imagined.
Betrayal: Joseph’s own brothers betrayed him by selling him off as a slave to merchants. The pain of the experience still lingered more than twenty years later.
Separation: They took Joseph away from his family and homeland at the age of seventeen. He came to Egypt, a nation whose people, language and culture were strange to him.
Humiliation: Although Joseph was from a prominent family, and had a wealthy father, he took on the identity and lifestyle of a slave. He toiled everyday and received the demeaning treatment that was common to slaves of the time.
Imprisonment: As a consequence of the false accusations of his master’s wife, Joseph spent a number of years in prison and still served as a slave while there. Although Joseph experienced a lot of unfair treatment, God remained faithful to him throughout. Ultimately, Joseph reconciled with his brothers and God healed the pain in his soul.
Ruth’s life was one seemingly torn by tragedy but eventually turning out beautifully. It has more to do with loyalty and endurance. With Ruth, we have a picture of suffering from a woman’s perspective.
Both Ruth and her mother-in-law experienced life after the loss of their husbands and it was challenging for them. They suffered emotionally but also had to deal with the poverty they faced. Ruth put her trust in God and he slowly but surely guided her to a better life. In the end, she married Boaz with whom she started a new life.
Nearly all that could go wrong in Job’s life went wrong. He lost almost everything he had: his wealth, his position of honor and all seven of his precious children. In addition to this, he became dreadfully ill and suffered daily with pain.
Job faced tragedy at the extreme. His faith was critically tested and although he remained devoted to God, he questioned the meaning of life. Like Job, many of us have doubted God’s love either because of our own experiences or because of the experiences of people we know. As we examine Job’s life story and words, we conclude that God’s ways are always just even when it appears otherwise. We also understand that God can restore our lives regardless of what we may have experienced.
We do not always see the life of Jesus as an example of overcoming adversity, but his path to the crucifixion tells us so much about dealing with God-ordained afflictions. Beginning from the garden of Gethsemane up to the time he gave up his spirit, Jesus went through untold suffering. Every phase brought its own challenge but Jesus remained determined to fulfill his Father’s purpose. In each phase, we pick something we can learn and apply to our own lives. We look at how Jesus handled betrayal, psychological distress, ridicule and physical pain. We learn that the most powerful way to overcome adversity is to remain in faith and love.
As we consider the experiences of Joseph, Ruth, Job and Jesus, it becomes clear that God can help us through our own storms and ultimately bring us better days.
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As an avid student of the Bible for several years, Martin K.M. has gradually attained a deep understanding of the Word of God and its enduring truths. He delights in sharing the Gospel with as many as he can and views writing as a great channel to do so. His works are characterized by a strong fidelity to the Scriptures along with the themes of hope and love. He seeks to produce writing that is uplifting, enlightening and life-changing.
Outside writing, Martin does visual design, loves classic films, is fascinated by the beauty of nature and enjoys watching a good game of European football.