Sunday, April 29, 2012

2 Chronicles 16:9, Romans 5:3-4, Job 42, Trials, perseverance, character and hope.

2 Chronicles 16:9
"For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him. In this you have done foolishly; therefore from now on you shall have wars."

Few of us look at difficult times in life and automatically think of them as opportunities. Often, we see them as an obstacle to avoid, or at the very least, something to complain about. Yet, each trial we walk through is indeed an opportunity to grow in faith. Just like the hard ground must be tilled in order to remove hard stones and prepare for seed, so it is with our lives. During trials, we often come face to face with our inadequacies as well as God's goodness, if we are willing.

Romans 5:3-4 "And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope." NKJV

As we suffer on this earth, we have greater and greater opportunities to grow in Christ as we trust Him--even in the midst of hard circumstances. When we trust in His Word, we will find that we are growing in Godly character. In short, we are becoming more and more like Jesus Christ. So the question each of us must ask is, "Would I rather live for comfort or live as Christ?"

Life Lesson: Every new trial brings with it the chance to trust God through difficult circumstances.

Dear Father,
Thank You for Your love for me. Your love is not a superficial love but a deep abiding love that desires my very best. Help me to see each pain as an opportunity to trust You more. May every trial lead me to the cross and make me more like Your Son. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Living to tell what He died to say,
Pastor David McGee

Senior Pastor
The Bridge

My Comments: As a Native American this verse always held my attention. I used to tell stories to children and there was one about a crab and how he got his eyes. This always flashes in my mind when I read this verse. The story is about deceit and stealing and the consequences. This verse is similar as it shows us what happens to us when we do not follow the Lord as He has directed us to do. He won’t force us to follow or to do the right thing yet there are consequences built in to each and every directive from Him.

It reminds me of when I was raising my children. I could not force them to obey my directives nor could I enforce their obedience or their joy in obeying. Yet if they disobeyed there were consequences. If they obeyed there were joyful consequences. If we obey God and take on His Sons Righteousness then we receive the joy of our Salvation from and through Jesus because of His sacrifice on the Cross. We then are assured of eternal life. Some of my children learned easily others not so easily and some took the hard road and had many hard consequences. A few have found the joy in receiving the Lord as their Savior.

One of the things I have learned and the few who have accepted the Righteousness of Christ, is that when we accepted His Righteousness we were not being accepted as His to sit on the side lines and rest or to have life served on a silver platter. We would be given and allowed trials and bumpy and sometimes very rough roads which would give us strength for what ever battles God would allow to come our way. Though He gave us the strength to go through them yet our muscles were likewise exercised and strengthened.

We grew in His Word, grew in our Love of God, grew in our joy to be used by Him, grew in our understanding and knowledge of Him who created us, grew in virtues and grace and were able to use all for His glory and praise.

Job was always one of my favorites because I felt I was like him. Yes, I went through many trials and sufferings in my life (even before my Salvation) and I confessed my sins often yet even after my salvation I did not see how arrogant I was. Job realized what he was and in Job 42 he tells God how much he did not understand and how his eyes are opened and his ears hear and he repented in dust and ashes. We are as nothing yet He loves us. That is amazing! He has produced hope through those things He has allowed to come into my life and that hope in my salvation.

Abba Father, thank You for the hope that is with in me. Thank You for the Cross. Thank You for sending Your Son to be our Salvation. Thank You for Your love. We praise You and glorify You and pray we give glory and honor to You in all we say and do, think and are. In Jesus our Lord we pray. Amen


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