In troubled times, many ministries are often forced to scale back in order to survive. ICR is no exception to economic pressures, of course, but our perspective remains solidly focused on our Lord's promise to "supply all your need" (Philippians 4:19). As such, ICR will remain wholly committed to knowing, following, and teaching the truth of our Creator as revealed in His perfect Word and expressed through His matchless creation. Our focus will not change as long as the Lord tarries, no matter how difficult the economic times may appear.
Scripture is full of examples where God used periods of great stress, evil, and trouble to perfect His will and refine His people. One thinks of Job as arguably the best example of personal affliction, as God allowed a period of severe testing to ultimately bring Job even closer to Him (Job 1:8-22). So from God's perspective, difficult times can be of great benefit to us, with God often using them to deepen our faith, improve our effectiveness, and focus our energies on winning the world for Christ. No matter how bad our situation, personally or in ministry, God "will not fail thee, nor forsake thee" (Deuteronomy 31:6), and will further provide great joy and contentment as we continue seeking His will.
Particularly in times of trial, we who have known and sought to follow the Lord for many years have received countless blessings for which to thank Him. As David sang so many years ago, "Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits" (Psalm 68:19). Yet there is one blessing which is so great that it cannot even be put into words--it is an "unspeakable gift" (2 Corinthians 9:15), the gift of the Creator Himself, the Lord Jesus Christ as our Redeemer and Savior, "in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory" (1 Peter 1:8).
That gift is so great that when we try to comprehend it, the sense of awe and gratitude so overwhelms us that our joy is truly inexpressible and indescribable! To think that the mighty Creator, God the Son, would not only humble Himself to become His own creature, man, but then willingly suffer the unimaginable agony of the cross and separation from God the Father in order to deliver us from the just penalty of sin--it is almost too much to bear! We, who deserve nothing but eternal separation from God in hell, will instead enjoy eternal life in heaven with God. What love, what grace! And all because of that amazing and truly inexpressible gift!
So this Easter, let us not focus on the trouble and turbulence around us, but rather on the many, many blessings we have to be eternally thankful for. Our precious Savior's most "unspeakable" gift should be foremost in our minds and hearts, as God's people rest in the knowledge that the Lord is in control, and loved us so deeply that He was willing to die for us. ICR invites your help to see that the message of redemption and salvation, as seen through the Creator's wondrous creation, continues to be proclaimed to a lost and dying world.
* Mr. Morris is Director of Donor Relations at the Institute for Creation Research.
Cite this article: Morris IV, H. M. 2009. Troubled Times, Unspeakable Joy. Acts & Facts. 38 (4): 21.