Summary: This is the sixth message in my NASCAR-themed "Finish Line" series, focusing upon ways we can cope with tragedy and hard times in our lives. (05-22-05)

Surviving a Crash

Job 1:13-22; 2:7-10; 38:4-11

Sermon Outline

Bible Truths and LIFE Applications

Tragedy, heartache, and difficult times … we have come to expect them in our lives. We know that even those of us who follow God faithfully are not immune to life’s “crashes.” We must realize that the real test of our faith is found in how we deal with the hard times in our lives.

How can you “Survive a Crash?”

1. Keep your faith in God. (Job 1:20)

• Remember … God sees the “big picture.”

• Remember … you can only see the “snapshot” that is your life.

• Don’t become devoured by bitterness.

• Be careful where you place the blame for your situation.

2. Pray. (Job 1:20-21)

• Sometimes, our first reaction to tragedy is to withdraw from God.

• Don’t cut off your personal communication with God.

3. Maintain your complete trust in God. (Job 1:22)

• Remember that you do not have a single thing that was not given to you by God.

• Every day, every moment, and every relationship is a gift from God.

4. Beware of bad advice. (Job 2:7-10)

• Even people really close to you can have some really stupid advice.

• If it doesn’t sound like it is from God, you can believe that it isn’t.

5. Wait upon the Lord. He remains in control. (Job 38:4-11)

• You are a child of the Most High God!

• Your side has already won the race!

• God is waiting for you at the finish line … on the other side of life’s crashes.

One Last Application

Remember … you are not immune from life’s “crashes.” But you don’t have to deal with them alone, either. God is on your side … and so are we!

Sermon Transcript:

Surviving a Crash

Job 1:13-22; 2:7-10; 38:4-11

The days are winding down in my current series, “It All Comes Down to the Finish Line…” Before we get into today’s study, let me first review a little from our lesson on dealing with stress, “Hanging on Through Life’s Turns.” See if you can remember a little of what we learned two weeks ago.

A Little Review from “Hanging On Through Life’s Turns”

1. Live a life of joy.

2. Exercise patience.

3. Trust in God … really trust in God!

4. Focus on God’s blessings. Remember how He is working in your life.

5. Remember your “pit stops!”

I hope that little review jogged your memory some and helped you to recall some previously learned lessons. Now it’s time for us to move on to another topic. So, let me tell you a story…

Opening Illustration

A young man, who had worked for years on the railroad, wanted a job as a signalman for the railroad. For his interview, he was told to meet the inspector at the signal box. The inspector asked him, “What would you do if you realized that two trains were heading toward each other on the same track?” The young man said, “That’s easy. I would switch the points for one of the trains.”

The inspector then asked, “What if the lever broke?” The young man said, “Then I’d jump down out of the signal box and I’d use the manual lever over there.” Next, the inspector said, “What if the lever had been struck by lightning?” The young man said, “Then, I would run to the signal box and phone the next signal box to let them know what was happening.”

The inspector continued on, “What if the phone was busy?” The young man said, “Well, in that case, I would rush down out of the signal box and use the public emergency phone at the crossing up there.” Then, the inspector said, “What would you do if the public emergency phone had been vandalized?” The young man said, “Oh, well, then I would run into town and get my uncle.” That answer puzzled the inspector. So, he asked, “Why would you go get your uncle?” The young man answered, “That’s simple. Because he’s never seen a train crash before.”

Contributed by: Lyndon Marcotte to

Unlike that young fellow’s uncle … most of us have seen a train crash before. Now, I’m not talking about a train that runs on tracks. I’m talking about those classic moments in our lives when things go so terrible wrong, when things get so bad, that the best way to describe the moment is simply to call it what it is … a train crash in our life. Have any of you ever had one of those before? Sure, you have! And, I can pretty much guarantee you … no matter how well things may be going right now, there is sure to be another one sometime in your future. It may be sooner … or it may be later … but somewhere, someday, you are going to have to deal with another crash in this race of life and faith that we are all running in.

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