Three Mistakes to Avoid in the Face of Difficulty
By Rick Warren
“In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33b NIV).
In Acts 27, Paul set sail for Rome with other prisoners, and they faced great difficulties on their journey because the winds were against them. Paul warned the men on one leg of their voyage that if they set sail, they would be caught in a major storm and the results would be disastrous. They decided to sail anyway, making three common mistakes that we also tend to make that get us into trouble.
1. We listen to bad advice. “[They] followed the advice of the pilot” (Acts 27:11b NIV). God had already said not to do it, and Paul warned them not to do it. But because the “expert” said it was okay, they did it. If God tells you to do one thing and all the experts in the world tell you to do something else, don’t listen to the experts. Listen to what God says.
2. We follow the crowd. “The majority decided that [they] should sail on” (Acts 27:12b NIV). The majority is often wrong! The majority of the Israelites wanted to go back to Egypt, and they were wrong, too. Peer pressure keeps a lot of people from doing what God wants them to do.
3. We rely on circumstances. “When a gentle south wind began to blow, they saw their opportunity” (Acts 27:13a NIV). Paul warned the others that they were heading into a storm, but they sailed anyway. You should not go through every open door you see. You should not take advantage of every opportunity given to you. You should not accept every job that is offered to you. You should not date everybody that asks you out. Satan can arrange circumstances, too, so you need to ask God for his direction.
Trouble is a part of life. You will have difficulties! Jesus told us so in John 16:33b: “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (NIV).
But knowing how to avoid these three mistakes will help you navigate through the difficulties you faced on your journey of faith.
Talk It Over
Why do you think God allows you to experience difficulty on your journey of faith?
How have you gotten into trouble because you made one of the three mistakes discussed in today’s devotional?
How did God deliver you in that situation?
Everything is Possible with God Study Kit with Bonus CD: Sound of Hope Worship
Just like exercise builds your physical muscles, God has a workout program for you to strengthen your faith. And in the Everything Is Possible with God Study Kit, Rick Warren shows you God’s divine training routine to help you strengthen your faith and develop your character.
In these six eye-opening sessions, Rick takes you through what he calls the “six phases of faith,” exploring subjects like how God builds your faith, how to make wise decisions, and moving from dead-end to deliverance.
The Everything Is Possible with God Study Kit is our gift to say thanks for your financial contribution below to share daily hope with even more people around the world. And as a special thanks for your donation today, we’ll also send you inspiring music to worship by — the all new CD — Sound of Hope Worship.
Thank you for your partnership. We’re grateful for you! Everything is Possible Study Kit with Bonus CD: Sound of Hope Worship is our gift to thank you for your support of Daily Hope.
This devotional © 2017 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
You can listen to Rick Warren on OnePlace.com.