On Wednesday night on Spirit Radio, the subject was ‘Being an overcomer – what if I don’t feel like more than a conqueror?’ – looking particularly at the verses towards the end of Romans 8. This is a subject dear to my heart, because I have a problem (which will come as no surprise to you!), and that is, I believe the Bible is true but when I look at my life, some truths are not there.
God inspired the Apostle Paul to declare that ‘in all these things we are more than conquerors’ (these things being trouble hardship, persecution, danger etc). Most of the time I don’t feel like a conqueror. ‘Overcomer’ is not a word that comes to mind when I think about my life.
So myself and Ruth Gyves thrashed it out a bit. What does it mean to overcome? What exactly IS the promise? And if I’m someone who believes in God and wants to put what He says into practise – the question is not ‘how do I become a conqueror?’, it’s ‘how do I live out what God says – that I AM already one?!”
Here’s what we came up with – with the help my hubs Richard too 🙂
- The fact that God promises we will overcome, means that there will be stuff in life that will need conquering. It is no surprise to him and He is ready for it.
- There are huge things in life that cause trauma and distress – sudden death, serious illness, global tragedies. But there are also less obvious, ongoing issues. Things that cause wear and tear on our hearts. Loneliness, isolation, depression. Because these things are inward, we often end up dealing with them alone; and that can be crushing to the soul.
However, they ARE covered by that promise of victory!
So… how do we live the truth of God’s promise?
- Well, any version of ‘conquering’ in our own strength is not going to work. This is where I think I fall down with this stuff. The verse says that, ‘in all these things [see above] we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.’ We cannot do it without God. So we need to call out to Him! Throughout the Bible we see God answering the call of people – whether they deserved it or not. In fact, the less deserving the person, the closer Jesus got to them. Compare his attitude to the woman caught in adultery (John 8) and Zaccheus (Luke 19) – to his attitude towards some of the religious leaders of the time (Matthew 23).
- To overcome something does not necessarily mean we’ve solved it or made it go away. The promise to overcome is also about enduring to the end. There is a future hope that we cannot even imagine (1 Corinthians 2:9). Elsewhere, Paul talks about ‘light and momentary’ troubles being nothing compared to the glory to come. Not that our troubles are made smaller by God’s power – but that the things he has prepared for us are so wonderful, that in comparison, by ratio they are 1:infinity!
- We were made for relationships and community. So we also need each other. Like I mentioned earlier, the big traumas in life are obvious to everyone. But the inner struggles, the ongoing wrestling with loneliness, sadness, exhaustion, whatever it is – they are very often unseen by people around us. So ask for help and ask for prayer. Don’t try to do it alone.
- Spend some time reading God’s Word and praying. The truths that remind us who we really are and what God has done for us, are all there in The Bible. We need to dig in to His truth.
And I’m talking to myself first by the way!
God is bigger than any and all of our problems and He will not leave us. After the promise that we are overcomers, Paul adds another. A promise God will always be with us.
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Beat that! 🙂