Matthew 4:1-11

Matthew 4:1-11

God, have Your way in my life, even if my life has to be a little uncomfortable, even if I don't get the things I want.Does God love you when trouble starts? Does God lead you, sometimes, into trouble? Would God do that to you? Yes. You know what? Sometimes the only way to get the attention of the world is to step into the trouble that they’re living in, and God leads you there. God will allow you to be persecuted. God will allow you to be tried. God will allow you to be tested…

When you face trouble in your life, how do you respond to it? Have you ever thought about why you respond how you do to trouble when you face it? You know, I face trouble on and off all the time, and there are times when I face trouble that I lose my temper, I get mad, I say the wrong things, I do the wrong things, especially when I’m driving my school bus…but then I started asking, “Lord, why do I respond that way?” …Do you know why we respond, sometimes, harshly to the circumstances that we face? I believe it’s because we’re not prepared in our heart…

You know what, generally, you find when the enemy attacks you? He challenges you with what the truth is in your life. “Has God really said?”… And you know what? I don’t care how hungry you are. I don’t care if it costs you your life. There are just some things that you don’t want to buy into. There are temptations that you need to stand firm through…

It’s not just what God has said. You know, there’s a lot of things that God has said that we ignore. I’d venture to guess that every one of us in this room who have ever endeavored to read and study God’s Word knows that there are parts of God’s Word right now, today, that we ignore. I do it. I confess it freely. Now, I’m not going to take the time to go through and tell you every part of this that I’m ignoring. You might throw some rocks at me if I did, but I allow the Holy Spirit to also speak to me…

You can survive if God asks you to. You can do the impossible if God asks you to, but when He does, the enemy is going to come and tempt you and say, “Has God really said?”…

If you are truly wanting to live, if you are truly wanting to grow strong, if you are truly wanting to walk right with the Lord, then begin to eat His Word. Begin to dwell on it and take it into you and allow for that Word to make changes in you. And you know what? Even in those parts that you’re ignoring now say, “Lord, I know I’m not obeying You fully, but show me how to do that,” and in time the Holy Spirit will bring you to that place of showing you where you’re ignoring Him…

Do you want to have things right in your life? Do you want to have strength to endure for tomorrow? The only way it happens is when you honor God through His Word. It’s not going to happen by your cleverness. It’s not going to happen by your own strength. It’s not going to happen by going out and shouting at the devil. I’ve done that on a couple of occasions. It just gave me a sore throat. You know what? The only way you can face the devil, the only way you can face the challenges of this earth, the spiritual challenges that will also go on around you, is to be prepared in your spirit. For some it may require fasting. For some it may just require eating regularly God’s Word, and I would say for most of us, that’s what’s involved; is that we get into God’s Word and strengthen ourselves within God’s Word, to know God’s Word. Isn’t this what Jesus’s greatest defense was? Jesus didn’t stand there and say, “Hey, buddy, I just went forty days without eating. I’m strong in God!” No, it wasn’t anything about what He did. It was about the knowledge He had in God’s Word. That became His protection, and so when the challenge came, He was able to answer the challenge because His strength was in answering through God’s Word…

Sometimes God will ask us to endure, but we endure better through those times when we know God’s Word, and we’re able to answer the challenge that comes to our heart. When we say, but God’s Word does say this. Yes, I do have a place of importance in the kingdom. I am a child of God. But you know what? It is not about me. It is about what God wants to accomplish in this world. It is about God proving Himself to a world, and if He wants to use me in this way, so be it. God, have Your way in my life, even if my life has to be a little uncomfortable, even if I don’t get the things I want. God, show those around me You love them, that You can bring them through the hard times, too, by using me. He may give you good times. In those times, just as equally, you need to say these are from the Lord. This is a blessing that God gave me, but guess what? It is not about the blessing. It’s about God working in my life.

Pastor Dave Elkins