AUGUST 30

Missing Something?

But we also exult in our tribulations. ROMANS 5:3

Gary Smalley told me one day about being in a Kansas City church where he'd been leading a weekend conference. When the final session was over and he went to retrieve his bag to leave, it was gone.

You know how it feels when something like this happens? After the mad scramble to search and check and double-check to see if you might have laid it down somewhere, you feel that sharp, gnawing regret and anger. "Why didn't I—? What was I thinking? Who wouldn't have known to—?"

On-site surveillance cameras recorded video of a tall kid in a striped shirt walking out the door with Gary's bag, but nobody knew who he was. There was no chance of finding it.

Gone were Gary's laptop with all his lecture notes, as well as hard copies he had printed out to read on the plane to Chicago for his next seminar. Add to that the loss of a ruby ring and necklace he had bought for his wife to celebrate their fortieth wedding anniversary.

Gary was nauseated. But then, the Holy Spirit convicted him. And Gary started thinking, Wait a minute, the Scriptures are clear: We're supposed to rejoice in our tribulations, "knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance" (Romans 5:3).

The Lord tells me to "boast about my weaknesses"—even the weakness of being a little absent-minded—"so that the power of Christ may dwell in me" (2 Corinthians 12:9).

Not immediately, but before the day was out, Gary had found his peace again . . . in the replenishing power of God's truth.

Truly, the Scriptures have the power to realign our thinking with the heart of God, showing us how to act, respond and live—even in the pressure-packed, disappointing moments of life.

DISCUSS

Which Scripture verses above seem to speak the clearest in regard to one of your present circumstances?

PRAY

Ask the Spirit to continually bring His Word to mind, just when you need it most. 

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