COLUMN: When the sun stands still

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God doesn't abandon us in trials

By Pastor Jon Rohr
Plum Creek Baptist Church

Some days are simply terrible and for some reasons those days seem to last forever.  One call from the hospital about an accident and suddenly time stands still.  The boss asks you into his office and in a moment a career disappears and just walking out of the office takes an eternity.

And in those terrible moments it is as if time runs on two different tracks.  On one hand, time slips by all too fast as decisions need to be made, bills need to be paid, the everyday business of life has to go on.  But on the other hand, every day seems a year long, grief or fear or despair clouds every moment.  Sleep won’t come at night, but in the morning it is all you can do to drag yourself out of bed to face another day.

There are times that life is just hitting us hard.  The battles we face are more than we can handle.  The battles of life are nothing new. We see them in movies and root for the heroes to succeed; we want the happy endings in fairy tales.  But when we are in the middle, when it is our drama, we realize that life is harder than any movie or fairy tale and usually doesn’t get fixed in 2 hours or less!

Joshua and the children of Israel faced many battles when they entered the Promised Land.  One stands out to me because in it we find that God made the sun stand still.  As Israel’s army pursued their enemies, Joshua prayed, “O sun, stand still over Gibeon, O moon, over the valley of Aijalon.” (Joshua 10:12 NIV) And God answered his prayer, the very next verse says, “So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, till the nation avenged itself on its enemies.” (Joshua 10:13 NIV)

So what does this mean for us?  It means that in the battles of life, sometimes God makes the sun stand still to give us time to achieve the victory.  Our days are in God’s hands and no matter what struggle we face, God is able to meet our need.  This does not mean it will be easy; remember Joshua was in the middle of a battle, asking for more time to fight the enemy!  Our enemies, the struggles we face may not consist of swords or spears, but they can be just as fearful.

In another place God says to Joshua, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9 NIV)  The sun may be standing still for you and you may be in the midst of a terrible battle.  If you walk through the blood and sweat and toil and tears with the Lord at your side, victory will be yours. Trust God and face the future with courage and determination.