Summary: Have you struggled with the thought, if I am a Christian why do I suffer affliction in my life?

Have you wondered, if God is going to bring blessing into my life, why do I seem to have so many struggles? Church, we have seasons of struggles and testing, the Lord has a purpose in not allowing us to be fruitful at all times. The seasons of struggle work to destroy the pride we have in our own abilities and reinforces our sufficiency on God.

I like what Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 4:17: Light affliction, which is but for a moment. Basically, Paul is letting us know, the seasons of struggle and testing will too pass. While you are going through this time, it may not be a season of change but a season of survival. Have you been there before? It is a time you cannot alter, but a time you have to live out. Let me explain what I mean by comparing ourselves to the seasons of a tree. During the winter, the forest silently refurbishes its strength, it is a time of preparation for the next season of fruitfulness. Its branches will rock in the wind, the sap and substance of the tree in the winter go underground, but it is not good-bye, for in the spring it will push its way up into the budding of a new experience.

Church, temporary setbacks create opportunities for fresh commitment and renewal. We will have our seasons of sunshine as well as our seasons of rain, for each stage has its purpose.

And who has not encountered the temptation to make a permanent decision based on temporary circumstances? Our temporary circumstances do not necessarily require action, they do however, require prayer, and prayer will bring us into patience during this time. Patience is developed through trust, and we cannot trust a God we do not talk with. Prayer is the seasoning of good judgment.

I am encouraged by the promise of God in Habakkuk 2:3, For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie; though it tarry, wait for it, because it will surely come, it will not tarry

We struggle in waiting for the appointment we have with destiny. God has set in motion, before the foundations of the earth, a predetermined appointment to bring to pass His promise in our lives. Though the winds of adversity may blow against us, God has already set an appointment with us in times past, God has already prepared a way of escape for the season of struggle and testing you might be going through right now. And when we have the peace of God, knowing our deliverance is at hand, then we also have the assurance there is nothing the enemy can do to abort God’s plan.

Peace then come when we know there is nothing we can do to rush God’s plan, for when the Lord speaks into our life, it is like a seed. A seed takes time to sprout, and peace is knowing that God will bring the seed to germination if we will allow Him. I have confidence in God’s seed. It is not by human might or power, but by the Spirit of the Lord Zech. 4:6 states. I have an appointment with destiny, and so do you. God has a purpose for my life. (Have them say, God has a purpose for my life). It is this awareness of that God has a purpose for my life that causes me to rise out of bed every morning, that causes me to fight for my very survival in a hostile world, and I can say with confidence that "My life can’t end without certain things coming to pass. It is not over until God says It’s over."

Can I speak to you parents and grandparents for a moment. It is important as parents to instill a sense of destiny in our children and grandchildren. Once they realize they have immeasurable potential, there is no stopping them. This is not to say they might not deviate from the path, I think all of us at one time or another have experienced this. But thank God they have a path to deviate from. There are so many children today who do not have a path to look at because their parents and grandparents have not spoken forth the truth of Christ in their lives.

In Genesis 3:15, God made a promise to Eve after she had partaken of the forbidden fruit in Eden. God said, And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, and you shall bruise him on the heel. Although God was addressing satan in this passage, there is included in this a promise to Eve of a seed, she was going to have offspring. In chapter 4 we read of the birth of Cain, and then the birth of Abel, his brother. Cain was jealous of Abel, so much so, that Cain killed his younger brother, and in that fit of rage, Eve’s dream lay dead in ruin, Cain was now a criminal, and Abel a corpse.

God turned Eve’s feeling of failure around. She was blessed with another son, Seth which means substitute. The word comes from the Hebrew root word for appointment or place. In holding Seth, Eve knew the sovereignty of God, what He declares shall surely come to pass.

Church hear me this morning. The evil one will come and try to delay the fulfillment of the promise of God in your life. Be confident in this, there are no demons or devils that can stop it from happening. God has a blessing for you! It may not come the way you thought it might come, or even through the person you thought God would use to bring it. It may be delayed, but it cannot be denied.

God purpose was not aborted when Cain killed Abel. We all know life has its broken pieces, but ultimately what God has said will come to pass. When we are going through loss, when we are suffering in the present, we cannot allow the past and present circumstances to abort our future opportunity. God has a way of restoring things back to you and I that we thought we would never see again.

Genesis 5:25 states, And Adam had relations with his wife again; and she gave birth to a son, and named him Seth, for, she said, "God has appointed me another offspring in place of Abel; for Cain killed him."

Each of us come into this world, cognizant of the fact we have a limited amount of time to accomplish things in our lives. It isn’t long before we are confronted with the reality of death. Be it a goldfish, a hamster, the death of a grandparent, friend or relative. Through this, hopefully we grow to understand it is not the quantity of our life, the time of our life, but the quality of our life that counts. When death pushes me through the window of eternity, I want to feel like I have accomplished something worthwhile with my life, I want to feel like my life made a positive statement, don’t you?

It would be terrible to look back over life and see the many times you thought your requests to God were denied, but they were actually only delayed. Life will always present us with broken places, places of struggles and conflict, and if you have a divine purpose that has been put on hold, hang on! Stay on the line until life gets back to you.

Turn to Psalm 40:1-3

I waited patiently for the Lord; And He inclined to me and heard my cry. He brought me up out of the pit of destruction, out of the miry clay; And He set my feet upon a rock making my footsteps firm. And He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God; Many will see and fear, And will trust in the Lord.

The real test of our faith comes in facing the silence of being on hold, it is those suspended times of indecision. Have you found times in your life where you have felt stagnant? I think All of us have faced days where we thought God had forgotten us, moments that have seemed like eternity, where our patience has received a real workout, when God’s answer was no answer, when we have come to a place of understanding the silence of God to mean it is not meant to happen right now. This is when we begin to learn and understand more of God’s timing, not our own. And the question is not do you have enough faith to receive, but do you have enough faith to assume a holding pattern and wait for the fulfillment of the promise.

You can experience a deep sense of contentment when you know God has not forgotten you. When you are struggling, consider the words of Genesis 8:1, But God remembered Noah and all the beasts and all the cattle that were with him in the ark; and God caused a wind to pass over the earth, and the water subsided.

Apply this to your own life. Before Noah ran out of resources and provisions, God remembered him! The Lord knows where you are, and He knows how much you have left in reserve. Just before you run out, God will send the wind to blow back the waters of impossibility and provide for you.

"But God remembered Noah". Sometimes very simplistic reminders that God is still sovereign brings great joy to the heart of someone who is in a holding pattern. God does not forget. Hebrews 6:10 states, For God is not unjust so as to forget your work and the love which you have shown toward His name, in having ministered and in still ministering to the saints.

Do you realize God’s records are so complete that he knows the very number of hairs on your head. They are not just counted, for counting would mean He simply knows how many hairs, the Bible tells us the hairs of our head are numbered, that means He knows the number or numbers of hairs that are in your comb as well.

And if God knows the number of hairs, He also knows your family, your tithe, your faithfulness.

When Noah had been held up long enough to accomplish what was necessary for his good, God sent the wind.

Church, there is a wind that comes from the Presence of God, a wind that blows back the hindrances and dries the ground under your feet. When the breath of the Almighty God breathes a fresh anointing upon you, its a divine indication of a supernatural deliverance that is on the way.

Regardless of the obstacles in your life, there is a wind from Heaven, a wind of God that can bring you out. You need to allow the wind of the Lord to blow down upon you., to blow away every spirit of fear and heaviness that would cause you to give up on what God has promised you.

Acts 2:2 describes the Holy Spirit as a mighty rushing wind--and for every problem you have in your life, there is a mighty rushing wind preparing to blow. It is going to blow back the Red Sea, it will roll back the Jordan River, it will blow dry the wet marshy flooded lands as it did in the day of Noah. It will blow a supernatural blessing onto your life.

God’s word is still ultra-effective against every current event in your life. It is time to let the River of God free to flow in your life, to feel the breeze of the Holy Spirit right now!

close with alter and closing song