Friday, November 26, 2010

The Squeeze Is on

"We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed." (2 Corinthians 4:8-9)

I remember those old episodes of "Batman" that I watched on television when I was a kid. The Dynamic Duo would always get in a jam that seemed like it would be the end of the caped crusader and his sidekick, Robin. They would be locked inside a room and suddenly all four walls would start closing in on them as would the ceiling and the floor. Soon it appeared that they would be turned into "Bat-cakes." And the voice of the announcer would then say, "Will this be the end of Batman and Robin? Find out tomorrow - same bat-time, same bat-channel." And what happened in the next day's episode? Batman always found a way out!

That episode seems to be a lot like what the Apostle Paul is describing in his ministry. He said that he was "afflicted." The word carries the idea of feeling pressure. And Paul further says that he was being afflicted (feeling pressure) in "every way." he wasn't just feeling pressure from one source. He was feeling pressure from multiple sources. it was like the walls were caving in on him. So what walls are "squeezing" in on you today?

Ministry walls?
Marital walls?
Parental walls?
Financial walls?
Relational walls?
Spiritual walls?
Physical walls?
Emotional walls?
Mental walls?

As the walls continue to squeeze in on you are you hearing that announcer's voice in your head saying, "Will he or she make it? Will this be the end for this ministry leader?" Well, you don't have to wait until tomorrow for the next episode to see what happens. You can know the answer today. Paul says, "We are afflicted (pressured, squeezed) in every way (from multiple walls) - BUT NOT CRUSHED!

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