Finding a Way to Get Into Trouble
So Moses returned to the Lord and said, “Lord, why have You brought trouble on this people? Why is it You have sent me?
―Exodus 5:22 NKJV
Moses complained that God had gotten the Hebrews into trouble when He sent him to demand that Pharaoh set them free from slavery. Pharaoh responded by making their tasks more difficult. Moses wanted to bring them a blessing, not increase their burden. “Why me?” Moses asked. Eventually he cooperated with God, and became the deliverer of the Hebrew nation.
The troublesome situation which initiated the exodus from Egypt to Canaan supports the quote by politician and social activist John Lewis who died on July 7, 2020. “Find a way to get into trouble,” Lewis said.” Good trouble. Necessary trouble.” He was jailed forty-five times for getting into trouble to right social wrongs. An outstanding result of his troubles is the legal end of racial segregation in America.
Christians are called to “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed.” (Proverbs 31:8 NLT); “Remember also those being mistreated.” (Hebrews 13:3 NLT) Such mandates may initiate trouble―good, necessary trouble, which comes from simply following God’s instructions. How extensive might the impact be, if we performed these duties faithfully?
It may take one brave act to right misunderstandings in our homes; to end domestic abuse in our neighborhoods; to eliminate prejudice in our churches. These good troubles are part of the “good fight,” which the Apostle Paul said will result in eternal life. They involve standing up for principle, speaking up when necessary, engaging in nonviolent tactics and trusting in God’s promise: “Fear not, for I am with you . . . I will strengthen you . . . I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10 NKJV).
Good trouble is not necessarily a one-man show. Perhaps instead of complaining to each other, we can stand together, blend our voices, and get into trouble by insisting on being heard. Let’s seek the wisdom and courage of our Heavenly Father who is “our ever-present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1). The result of our good troubles is the extension of His kingdom. (Matthew 25:40)
Prayer: Dear God, thank You for the opportunity to become vessels through whom You can right wrongs and help the world to live by Your standard of love for each other, In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Ten Quotes to Prepare Us for Good Trouble
- “Jesus promised his disciples three things—that they would be completely fearless, absurdly happy, and in constant trouble.” ―William Barclay
- “The more I get to know Jesus, the more trouble he seems to get me into.” ―Shane Claiborne
- “God doesn't call us to be comfortable. He calls us to trust Him so completely that we are unafraid to put ourselves in situations where we will be in trouble if He doesn't come through.” ―Francis Chan
- "Choose confrontation wisely, but when it is your time don't be afraid to stand up, speak up, and speak out against injustice." —John Lewis
- “Nothing is too much trouble if it turns out the way it should.” ―Julia Child
- “The trouble is that once you see it, you can't unsee it. And once you've seen it, keeping quiet, saying nothing, becomes as political an act as speaking out. There's no innocence. Either way, you're accountable.” ―Arundhati Roy
- “Life is a winding and troubled road. . . And the point of biblical stories like Joseph and Job and Esther and Ruth is to help us feel in our bones (not just know in our heads) that God is for us in all these strange turns. God is not just showing up after the trouble and cleaning it up. He is plotting the course and managing the troubles with far-reaching purposes for our good and for the glory of Jesus Christ.” ―John Piper
- “Love feels no burden, thinks nothing of its trouble, attempts what is above its strength, pleads no excuse for impossibility, for it thinks all things are lawful for itself and all things are possible” ―Thomas A. Kempis
- “The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly; it is dearness only that gives everything its value. I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress and grow.” ―Thomas Paine
- “God is our refuge and our strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” ―Psalm 46: 1 NIV
- Purpose: The Reason We Don’t Give Up
God’s question, “What are you doing here?” suggests that Elijah was in a wrong place, where self-pity robbed him of his significance. Why stay in a place where it seems that purpose has expired?
- Say Something Good and Also Something Helpful
Sometimes it takes the gracious words of another person to point out God’s favor. That’s by design. The attitude of both speaker and listener improves when we build each other up with the right words.
© 2020 Dora Weithers