Trouble knocks a lot of nonsense out of us. It often knocks us off our high-horse and onto our knees. It's then that it reminds us of our need of God.
The instructions on some medicine bottles say, “shake well before using.” That’s what God has to do to us sometimes. He shakes us to make us usable.
American novelist Thornton Wilder wrote, “In love's service only wounded soldiers can serve.” What does that mean? Often our times of greatest ministry will come out of our greatest hurt. So, when trouble comes, look for the good in it. Use that experience to become a wiser, humbler, better person. God never wastes a hurt. Don’t you either.
Anthropologist Margaret Mead once said, “We are living in the period of greatest change ever known in the history of the world.” Amid all the changes and decay of life, it is encouraging to know that God is unchanging (Malachi 3:6). How so?
First, God is unchanging in his demand for meaningful worship.
Cheap sacrifices and empty formalism never have and still don’t satisfy him. Religious observances cannot substitute for right living. We are not to leave off church attendance and prayer, but they are all sheer futility and mockery if they are not accompanied by right moral conduct. God still demands good moral conduct from his people.
Second, God is unchanging in his hatred for sin.
Sin is anything contrary to the will and word of God. God always has and always will oppose sin because of what it does to people. Every law from God has been for our benefit and well-being. Sin is like sand in the ball bearings of the human personality. It creates friction and eventually total ruin wherever it is found. The whole Bible story is a record of God’s actions to remove sin and restore humanity to our original perfect state.
Third, God is unchanging in his plans for the future.
He plans to return to the earth again to distinguish between good and evil and reward people accordingly. Any view of life that does not take into account the future and final judgment of God and our accountability to him is an inadequate view.
Amid this changing, uncertain world the Bible reminds us to take courage. All things are not passing away. Some things remain unchanged. God and his Son Jesus Christ are the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).