Memory Verse: For our momentary affliction (this slight distress of the passing hour) is ever more and more abundantly preparing and producing and achieving for us an everlasting weight of glory (beyond all measure, excessively surpassing all comparisons and all calculations, a vast and transcendent glory and blessedness never to cease!) 2 Corinthians 4:17 (Amp)
Psalm: 77 (MSG)
Challenge: Make a list of your weeds (bad days) and wheat (good days) in this journey and ask God to give your discernment on how to respond in both. Then take the time to encourage someone that you know in a storm season-via call, text, post, or tweet. Don’t just pray for them, pray WITH them. Post their initials or first name and we will stand in agreement with you. #onebody
As we have discovered, contentment in this season (or any season for that matter) is a journey, not a destination. So just like any other journey, there will be pitfalls and roadblocks and detours and just plain bad days. Bad days will come. This is an unavoidable part of this journey, but it doesn’t have to be a negative part of it.
Yesterday may have been a good day, and tomorrow may be a not so good one-from your emotional standpoint, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t purpose in both. God uses trials, tribulations and downright storms to test our faith’s durability, to train us to watch and pray, and prepare us for what is up ahead.
Job’s storm was used to prove to the enemy that we could and would still bless God even in struggles and when all things around us are destroyed. He proved that we really desire God’s face and not just what is in His hand. Job’s bad days make it possible for us to learn how to get through ours. David had a bad day when he decided to count the troops against God’s will (2 Samuel 24) and ended up being responsible for the death of 70,000 men because of his disobedience. This was a bad day. But yet God relented and showed mercy.
From these two circumstances we understand that bad days can be of our own doing or simply a result of us being ‘called up’ by God to prove to the enemy that our faith in Him is not circumstantial, but genuine. Either way, we have a choice in those days. We can sit and wallow in misery, or we can build an alter and praise God for his mercy and grace even in the storms.
INSIGHT: ‘I don’t know if doing this challenge ‘once-more’ is just for me, but each day has blessed me so much and speaks directly to me. Man, these bad days can be a beast, but our God is known to be beast slayer. After a breakup (which is the focus of our next challenge-stay tuned), its a struggle to get back to the routine and even the joy of flying solo again. It’s not impossible, but it does take intentional work. This is where I was, and I stayed their longer because I wasn’t ready to fully give it to God. Once I realized that everything in my life is for God’s glory, I was free to look at my breakup and return to Singleness not as another life-term in prison, (lol) but an opportunity to do it ‘once-more’ and correct some of those things that I didn’t quite get right the first time.’
So what does a bad day look like in relation to Singleness? I believe those bad days come when, although you are satisfied with God, your desire for marriage takes over, and then it’s a struggle to regain your contentment. The key to
learning from these days is not to stay there. Realize and recognize that these days come to push us into the arms of a loving Savior Who wants to wrap His arms around us and sing over us (Zephaniah 3:17). In Matthew 13 Jesus tells the masses the Parable of the Wheat and the Weeds.
24 Jesus told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. 25 But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. 26 When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared.27 “The owner’s servants came to him and said, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?’ 28 “‘An enemy did this,’ he replied.
“The servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’ 29 “‘No,’ he answered, ‘because while you are pulling the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.’”
Jesus then goes on to explain this parable to the disciples:
36 Then he left the crowd and went into the house. His disciples came to him and said, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds in the field.” 37 He answered, “The one who sowed the good seed is the Son of Man. 38 The field is the world, and the good seed stands for the people of the kingdom. The weeds are the people of the evil one, 39 and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels.
40 “As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. 41 The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. 42 They will throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears, let them hear.
I think it is key that Christ only explained this parable to the disciples. Those that were intimate with Him, that communed with Him daily, that spent time with Him. Remember we discussed in Day 1: Divine guidance only comes to prepared hearts. We must have eyes to see and ears to hear (Day 2).
God will not allow the bad days to not come, because we need to learn how to grow in distress, how to push through the weeds and how to fight for our contentment. Those weeds (bad days) are mixed in with our wheat (good days), but we can rest in the promise that when it’s harvest time (marriage, promotion, business, etc) then our roots will be stronger and we will be all the better because of the adversity.
INSIGHT: ‘God trusts you with bad days. He knows that you can handle them and come out stronger than you were before. He also knows that what is sent to test you will also toughen you for what is coming, and prepare in you a work that will even further benefit the kingdom. Each trail gives God an opportunity to show the devil that you can and will bounce back. God didn’t allow the weeds to be pulled up because He knew that just their simple presence would cause the wheat to FIGHT to grow. The wheat had to work even harder to sprout up and reach maturity, because it had a direct enemy fighting for its demise. What a powerful testament to what God wants for us as Singles. He knows that with everything in the world pushing us to be distracted, to take this season as an opportunity to be selfish and ‘do me’, and with everyone telling us to hurry up and try to get out of this season- that we would have to FIGHT to live a focused, selfless Single life that is souled out for Him. But He also knew that we would be strong enough to handle it, and that when harvest time is here (and believe me it’s coming), we would be so much more prepared to face it. As Paul says in 2 Corinthians 12:9, I will boast all the more in my struggles (my bad days) because when I am weak, God’s strength is resting upon me. Bring on the rain!’
So don’t pray for God to change your storm. Pray for God to change YOU through your storm. He knows how much you can handle, and just as a silversmith sits before his silver in the fire, God is sitting watching you, and He knows that the fire is hot, but He sees something you can’t. He sees all the impurities being melted away and He is waiting to pull you out at just the right time-when He can see His reflection, HIS IMAGE in your life (Malachi 3:3). Our bad days may keep coming, or we may keep going back in the fire, because God can’t see His image in us yet. Each trial and temptation, He is calculating and if His response is ‘No, I wouldn’t do that. That doesn’t look like my character. That is not a fruit of the Spirit. Patience has not completed it’s perfect work…’ then you will stay in the fire until you learn to glorify Him not just with your lips, but with your life (Matthew 15:8).
Can God trust you with bad days?