If Need Be

by Stephanie Blackiston

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I am sitting at my computer listening to the birds sing outside my window.  It’s a beautiful spring day.  I have laundry piled high, waiting to be folded. Baseball uniforms that need to be ready by tonight’s games, dishes I can’t seem to keep up with, and papers that need to be graded. It’s a beautiful life I could have never dreamed of.

Keeping my home is a high calling.

My highest calling is to daily grow in my relationship with Jesus Christ.

In twenty years of walking with the Lord, I have experienced various trials.  Like you, I have walked through fires that have tested my faith at its core. Thick confusion sets in when we are being tested.

Is God really good? Does He really use ALL things together for my good?

Will my faith survive this fire?

I am going to share with you three Biblical words {you may have never noticed before} that I have learned to speak over and over in the fire.

“IF NEED BE”

“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love.” 1 Peter 1:6-8

“If need be” means: it is necessary, there is need of, it behooves, is right and proper.

  1. Necessity brought on by circumstances or by the conduct of others toward us.
  2. Necessity in reference to what is required to attain some end

Sometimes those three little words are all I can say during a trial. I pray,  “God, I don’t understand this.  I don’t want this! This is too painful…but Your Word says ‘if need be’. I believe this is a loving necessity… not an accident.”

It is Biblical and right to be grieved {for a little while} by our various trials.  Grieving doesn’t mean a lack of spirituality. The Holy Spirit grieves. But, according to this passage, we can greatly rejoice while we grieve over our trials. I don’t normally put grieving and rejoicing together, but God does!

Did you know that the Bible says our trials are “color-coded”? (That is what the word “various” means!) In a sense, our trials come in different varieties and colors.

Later in 1 Peter, we find out that we are also given color-coded, or “various,” grace (1 Peter 4:10). In other words, for purple trials He gives purple grace! The exact grace for each trial!

The same word is used to describe “various” sicknesses (Luke 4:40), and then again for “various” miracles (Hebrews 2:4).  God can give specific color-coded miracles for color-coded sicknesses! Red illness= red miracle!

How about that for increasing your faith? Keep praying for your matching miracle!

But what happens when the miracle doesn’t come?

Let’s look at someone in Scripture whose miracle didn’t come.

“Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus.  So when He heard that Lazarus was sick, He stayed where He was two more days,  and then He said to his disciples, “Let us go back to Judea.” John 11

At first glance, Jesus can seem unavailable and/or uninterested as Lazarus is dying. Why didn’t He come stop the illness before it resulted in death? Because He sees a much bigger picture. It says that Jesus loved Lazarus.

I believe love is what kept Jesus from coming. Jesus wanted to give Lazarus the privilege of living a resurrected life.

You may not be physically dying right now, but you could be experiencing a trial that feels like it is going to end in spiritual death. Where is Jesus? Why isn’t He coming?

Love.

It is happening so you will see the glory of God, so you can know His resurrection power, and so others will believe!

“Didn’t I tell you that you would see God’s glory if you believe?”  So they rolled the stone aside. Then Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, thank you for hearing me.  You always hear me, but I said it out loud for the sake of all these people standing here, so that they will believe you sent me.”  Then Jesus shouted, “Lazarus, come out!”  And the dead man came out, his hands and feet bound in grave clothes, his face wrapped in a head cloth. Jesus told them, “Unwrap him and let him go!” John 11:40-43

What favor! What a privilege to be chosen to be resurrected from the dead! I imagine Lazarus didn’t feel favored when he was sick and dying, but he was.

Imagine how different his life must have been after walking out of that grave! The next time we see him, he is reclining at a table with Jesus! When you have been resurrected, I am sure you are much more LAID BACK!  Afterall, what is there to be afraid of when Jesus Christ has already conquered your greatest fear?

“Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die.” John 11:25

Friends, even if you “die” waiting for Jesus to come, He will resurrect you. He is coming! He always comes.

“Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.” Romans 8:34

Remember, trials come on a “if-need-be” basis. Nothing slips into your life without purpose. Pray for color-coded grace and a matching miracle!

He is able!

And if the miracle doesn’t come, God is doing something bigger. You just can’t see it yet.

“I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of His resurrection” Phillipians 3:10

Stephanie Blackiston

StephanieBlackiston

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