Suffering

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“Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.

‭‭Romans‬ ‭5:3-4‬ ‭NIV‬‬

God does not cause suffering, the broken world we live in does. The broken people who live in it ( including ourselves) do. God doesn’t cause suffering but He will use it to do a divine work of growth in you.

He will use it to grow the strength of your character, the perspective of perseverance and your capacity for hope.

Suffering can produce hope.

How? 

Because Jesus will use the suffering others cause to challenge every false belief,  reveal every lie that trips you up and shows you how to persevere when you want to quit. He will uncover the misconceptions you have about Him and open your eyes to see how even in the hardest of times, hope will hold on to you.

“The typical view fo the Christian life is that it means being delivered from all adversity. But it actually means being delivered in adversity, which is something very different.”

– Oswald Chamber, My Upmost for His Hightest

 

Don’t give up.

Anchor yourself to His Word and hold on.

Grasping

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“A grasping person stirs up trouble, but trust in GOD brings a sense of well- being.”‭‭ Proverbs‬ ‭28:25‬ ‭MSG‬‬

It is exhausting to live your life grasping for security but not ever really holding on to it.

It can be triggered by envy, fear or sometimes a sense of personal failure. It is always triggered by focusing on “me, myself and I “.

It is based on the belief that you don’t have what you need or enough of what you need to be secure, so you keep grasping for it in relationships, personal accomplishments, financial security and so on.

The original Hebrew word used for “trust” in the verse above means “secure”.

You can live your life from a place of security instead of insecurity.

That security is found in the love of God.

Put down the worry and fear that is plaguing your life and lift your hands in worship.

Spend some time in the presence of Jesus. You will find more peace in worshipping God than you ever will by focusing on yourself and what you lack.

You do not need more of you (or a better you, a better relationship or more stuff) to be more secure- you need more of God.

You are His precious child. That doesn’t mean life’s journey will be easy, it means that He will supply you with what you need to live it.

You can stop trying to feel secure in who you are and embrace the reality of whose you are.

Your identity comes from Jesus, not your family or lack thereof, not from your accomplishments or shortcomings, not from your success or failures but from Him.

My prayer for you today is that you unfurl the grasping grip of insecurity and lift them up in worship to God. May you worship Him for who He is and be reminded whose you are.

What Amazes God

  

There are two times recorded in the Bible where Jesus stood amazed:

1. At the unbelief of people from his hometown. (John 6:1-5)
 
2. At the faith of the Roman centurion who asked Jesus to heal his servant by sending His word. (Luke 7:7,9)

‭”We never read that Jesus marveled at art or architecture or even the wonders of creation. He never marveled at human ingenuity or invention. He didn’t marvel at the piety of the Jewish people or the military dominance of the Roman Empire. But Jesus did marvel at faith – when it was present in an unexpected place, and when it was absent where it should have been.” 
— David  Guzick 

Have you ever been amazed what God is doing in someone else’s life but unable to believe that He could do anything in yours? 

You can get sidetracked by looking at natural facts instead of looking into the face of Jesus. 

You can build your faith or tear it down according to what you focus on. 

Your faith does not add to God’s ability.

Your lack of it does not limit it either.

Jesus is Almighty God, Advocate, Savior, King of kings and Lord of lords. He can do more than you can ask or imagine. 

The difference between the faith (or lack of faith) of those in Jesus’ home town and that of the centurion was that the first group never even asked Jesus do something. They rationalized away His power with their  knowledge and past experience.  The centurion knew how authority worked, looked at what Jesus had done for others and took a risk.
He asked.

Faith asks.
Faith acts.
Faith risks.
Faith obeys.

You may be waiting until you have more faith to ask. More faith to act. More faith to risk. More faith to obey but Jesus said it’s not the amount of faith you have, it’s what you do with it. 

“So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.”. Matthew‬ ‭17:20‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

I am not saying I understand it all or have wrapped my brain around it. 

I am only asking myself (and you) a couple of questions:

“Am I using the faith I have and doing something with it, no matter how small I think it is?”

and

“How am I amazing God today?”

Mountains

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He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you. ” (Matthew 17:20 NIV)

It may look like a mountain to you, but to God it looks like an opportunity.

An opportunity for you to learn that if you line your words up with the faith born in your heart by the Holy Spirit, you can tell that mountain to get out of your way and it will.

It is an opportunity to trust God and recognize that he has trusted you with the power to speak the truth and move the mountain in your life.

You already know that with God it is possible. He wants you to take that knowing and act on it. Speak the truth and do the impossible.

What is your impossible mountain?

What words of faith will move it?