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Do we rely too much on the inspirational quotes from the Bible? It seems like a silly question because we all need to be uplifted and inspired, so what better place to find that than in Scripture? But how much thought do we give to the whole message of the Bible? Scrolling through Pinterest, I’ve noticed that besides food and crafts, one of the most popular boards that people create is one on inspirational quotes. Shoot, they are even our most pinned items. A Bible verse that I often see is Isaiah 41:10: “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”  What a verse. What better feeling than to know that God is protecting us? The thing is, the next two lines of Isaiah read: “All who rage against you will surely be ashamed and disgraced; those who oppose you will be as nothing and perish. Though you search for your enemies, you will not find them. Those who wage war against you will be as nothing at all.” -Isaiah 41:11-12 Isaiah 41:10 looks a little different when you read Isaiah 41:11-12 along with it. Yes, God promises to watch over His people, but He doesn’t promise the same for those who oppose Christianity. Furthermore, even though He always has a hand on us, He does not promise us a life without heartache and pain. The problem with only viewing God as inspirational is that inspiration can come across as  sugar-coated. God promises to love and forgive us. He provides us with all of the good in this world… but He has not promised complete comfort and happiness once we give our lives to Him. In fact, there are some pretty disturbing stories in the Bible, and a life of sin in a broken world affects us all. These darker messages of the Bible are there to teach us something. They are there to show us how to overcome the obstacles and pain that we are sure to experience. If we all expected God to give us a life of ease and comfort, then why would we need Him as our Savior? Beyond that, how strong would our faith be when we felt like He had “let us down”?

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