Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Overwhelmed - Martin Wiles

But the other men who had explored the land with him answered, “We can’t go up against them! They are stronger than we are.” Numbers 13:31 NLT

False accusations, anger, unkind remarks. They were all in the mix. He was overwhelmed.

Ben’s father had been a pastor for as long as Ben could remember. As a young man, Ben felt God calling him to follow in his father’s footsteps. Things went well until his fifth year at his third church. That’s when Ben discovered his wife had been unfaithful.

False accusations from some church leaders flew at Ben like barn swallows diving for insects. Among them, he knew about her antics but covered them up. At the same time, Ben led the church through some needed changes. The changes angered some, who, in turn, directed their angry, unkind remarks toward him.

Ben felt overwhelmed. Attacks came from the outside, and he watched his family dissolve from the inside. The ruling church board didn’t want to ask for his resignation, but they told him staying would probably split the church. Ben had to decide, and he decided to leave.

Moses felt overwhelmed, too. He—along with more than a million people who had recently escaped from slavery—waited at the border of the long-awaited Promised Land. Spies surveyed the land so the people could plan their method of attack.

Of the twelve spies Moses sent, only two said they could take the land. The others were overwhelmed by the walled cities and the fierce people. Their fear crept on the remainder of the people. Instead of traveling on, they turned back.

Like Ben and the ten spies, I’ve traveled through periods when I felt overwhelmed. Sometimes I was my own worst enemy; at other times, Satan was. I’m good at taking on too much, which can lead to feelings of being overwhelmed. But Satan is also an expert at capitalizing on my weaknesses and poking me at the very point that makes me feel overwhelmed.

God would have given victory to the Israelites had they decided to enter the Promised Land. They merely had to trust Him. He wants to give us victory when we feel overwhelmed as well. We can trust Him to help us set realistic priorities. He can also help us overcome the temptations that sometimes overwhelm us. All that’s required is putting on the armor He provides (Ephesians 6:10–18).

What overwhelms you that you need to give to God? In His power, you can overwhelm rather than be overwhelmed.

Father, I thank You that I can trust You to help me overcome whatever might attempt to overwhelm me.

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