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Just like modest investments can grow over time, our investment into God’s kingdom generates growth and produces eternal dividends. The apostle Paul presented the Macedonian believers as an example of generous giving to the Corinthian church and to us. Let’s explore some of the reasons to grow in generosity together.
Confronting others concerning biblical/theological compromise is never easy or pleasant. Such encounters must be handled with sensitivity to the needs of others, directed by spiritual wisdom and the Scriptures, and guided by the Holy Spirit. Paul closed chapter two of his letter to the Galatians by telling of his public encounter with Peter, during which Paul boldly confronted Peter concerning his hypocrisy before the church in Antioch.
On the surface, hearing God and following His commands seems straightforward. However, when God calls us to do something that generates fear in us, finding the courage to obey such a call is overwhelming. Today, we will explore the call God gave to Gideon and see how we can follow Gideon’s courage to obey God.
I had not realized how angry I had become or how far I had strayed from Him until recently when I had what felt like a complete emotional and mental breakdown. I have always known God to be exactly who He says He is, but in April 2018 a division in the church I had attended for twenty years started me on a spiritual decline causing me to question everything I believed about church leaders and God himself.
It’s easy enough to read “don’t let your heart be troubled,” but it’s another thing all together to put it into practice. I had confessed my mistake and asked for forgiveness, I’d done everything I could think of to find peace. So why was my heart still troubled?
Often, our holiday gatherings include people who aren’t in our day-to-day orbit… and maybe for good reason. They may have ideas, opinions, or beliefs so far from our own that it can feel like they live on a different planet. We may not always agree with those around us, but as followers of Christ, we are called to be quick to hear and slow to speak (James 1:19).
Shortly after having our third child, my husband took a huge leap of faith and left the corporate world to make a career switch. He had hoped this change would allow more time with our family, but when this did not pan out, he found himself returning to the corporate ladder on a much lower rung. His salary was barely of third of what it had been.
“Do you want to be happy?” The psychiatrist’s question sounded more like an accusation, and I sullenly mumbled something about happiness not being my MO. Though I cannot remember her exact response, the message was indelible: if I didn’t, she couldn’t help me. I glanced shamefully at my mother, who had already driven me hundreds of miles to other professionals, desperately hoping someone could lead me off this road of self-destruction.
At my lowest moments, instead of drawing on the truth that Jesus loves me and wants me to live the abundant life, I focused on my angry list of all that God was allowing to happen to me. The more songs and hymns and platitudes I heard, the more I steeled myself against His embrace.