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An Ounce of Prevention

A righteous man may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all.
Psalm 34:19

“Your dog tested positive for heartworms,” the veterinarian said. I listened as he laid out the treatment plan. It would be a 5 month long process of injections, daily medications and limited activity. That was the short treatment. The other could take up to seven years!

How could that have happened? She has been on heartworm prevention for a year. The test was negative a year ago. I had done all I knew to protect my dog, and she still contracted heartworms.

The safeguards we put in place do not always prevent problems. We may be stricken with a disease in spite of eating well and exercising. We may have a rebellious child even though parenting with love, discipline, and prayer. We may wreck the car while following the rules of the road.

We are not alone. God encourages us through the stories of others that have endured unjust treatment. Job suffered greatly although he was blameless, upright, and God-fearing. David, described as a man after God’s own heart, encountered many setbacks in his life.  Joseph, an obedient and much loved son, was betrayed and torn from his family for many years.

Suffering can be hard to understand. Shouldn’t troublemakers and the undisciplined be the ones suffering? Yes, but we are also warned that a righteous man may have many troubles (Psalm 35:19). 

But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God. To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in His steps (1 Peter 2:20-21). If anyone deserved a problem-free life, it would be Jesus. But He was called to suffer, as are we.

Job, David, Joseph and Jesus all magnified the Lord in the midst of difficulties. We can as well. We are promised that even when we go through hard times, the Lord will deliver us from them all (Psalm 35:19).


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