Don't Let Trouble Defeat You

Bible verses to help you keep your problems in perspective.

By Elizabeth Peale Allen, Pawling, New York

Nobody likes trouble. Yet the Bible tells us, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance” (James 1:2-3). It’s kind of counterintuitive, isn’t it? We tend to think of difficulties as bad, to be avoided at all costs. Yet it’s often through trials that our hearts are stretched, our prayer life deepens and we grow closer to God.

The up-close concerns of daily living sometimes cause us to forget that we are called to view life from a longer perspective, one in which “our citizenship is in heaven” (Philippians 3:20). “A thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by,” says Psalm 90:4. Part of faith is believing that God always has a long-term plan, one that extends beyond the grief and pain of today.

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I keep a list of Bible verses handy to remind myself of the long term nature of life. Some of my favorites include:

  • “Lord, you are my God; I will exalt you and praise your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done wonderful things, things planned long ago” (Isaiah 25:1).
  • “‘For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future’” (Jeremiah 29:11).
  • “In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps” (Proverbs 16:9).
  • “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10).
  • “You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water” (Psalm 63:1).

So if you are facing difficulties today… rejoice! Heaven awaits us, and when we are there the trials of this life will be put in proper perspective.