Wisdom for The Rough Patch

Matthew 21:1-11

The Lord here fulfilled yet another prophecy spoken by Zechariah that the King would come mounted upon a donkey (Zechariah 9:9) which was one of hundreds of attesting signs regarding His identity, the Savior King, Jesus Christ. The people, believing He came to deliver them from Roman oppression to set their nation free, paid tribute to Him by spreading palm branches in the street before Him as He entered Jerusalem and shouting the Messianic blessing [unbeknownst to them], ” …Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord …” (Psalm 118:24-26).

  But in a couple of days, their hopes were squelched. Jesus was crucified, died, and they buried Him in a tomb. Believing they would finally be set free from the government oppression of the Romans, their hearts were bitterly disappointed. Disillusionment racked their souls as they scattered to their homes. Jesus wasn’t who they thought He was; and He would not set their nation free.

  But, three days later when He rose from the dead, they began to understand that His was a greater plan than simply setting the nation of Israel free. His plan involved setting sinners everywhere and throughout the ages free from the power, penalty, and punishment of their sins, giving those who repented of their sins and came to Jesus by faith the certain hope of eternal life.

  The last two years of my life, although filled with the Father’s peace, have been confusing to me. Desiring to be strongly on mission with the Lord as I have been before, I nevertheless seem to be in a holding pattern. Waiting. Yearning. Listening. Waiting. It is important to note that we, too, often misunderstand the plan of the Lord. We come to a rough patch in life, a time when we don’t understand His plan for our lives. Our plan is foiled, a dream dies unfulfilled, we don’t know what is happening and why, so we are perplexed, confused, maybe even disillusioned.

  Remember that His ways are not our ways and HIs thoughts are higher than our thoughts (Isaiah 55:8, 9).  Remember, faith is built in the rough patch. Faith is tried when we do not see nor understand. We must simply stand on the Father’s Word and trust in the Lord. Stand on the solid rock of His Word in spite of what you see or don’t see. Charles Stanely said, “He has a way of resurrecting your dreams in a manner far beyond your imagination that is bound to make you truly joyful.” [1]

1. Charles Stanley: “Jesus, Our Perfect Hope,” p. 109.