The Dawn of courage through Trials as Christians”

Peter starts out by saying do not be surprised when we encounter the fiery trials of life. We all bear the weight of trials, but God strengthens us through our afflictions. God is with us to impower us to walk thought our dark times with the gift of his word, prayer and his Holy Spirit. 

 The world will persecute and hate us for our convictions, and this strengthens our will to persevere as we see how Christ carried out the will of the father. 

As Christians we continue to make a difference in this world for good even as the world rejects and inflicts evil back at us. We pray together and are stronger than ever for our Savior Jesus Christ. This is the dawn of a stronger Church!

Trials what are they? What comes to mind?

  1. A formal examination of evidence before a judge, and typically before a jury, to decide guilt in a case of criminal or civil proceedings:
  2. A test of the performance, qualities, or suitability of someone or something.
  3. A test of faith, patience, or stamina through subjection to suffering or temptation.

Bing! # 3 for me for sure, and most likely in these days for you as well. 

I found a passage in John 16:33 

“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart because I have overcome the world.”

 

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Trials, crisis what ever you call them we all have them.

Trials of long term health issues.

Trials of a new medical diagnosis that came of on nowhere!

Trials of endless anxiety.

Trials of a prodigal Child.

Trial of dealing with this pandemic. 

On and on we can name many other issues in these days.

I found several comments from a Pastor Fowler that helps.

There may be a way provided by God but sometimes we are so caught up in what is happening that we don't see it or even want to see it or can't see it because of our own circumstances and desires.

*Praise God for Romans 8:34 

Who is there to condemn us? For Christ Jesus, who died, and more than that was raised to life, is at the right hand of God--and He is interceding for us.”

The arrival of difficult circumstances should be no surprise to the Christian. The fact of the matter is that hardship is an unfortunate, yet unavoidable reality that every Christian must face in this life. 

Jesus spoke to his disciples about expecting trouble. 

(John 16:33)

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”. 

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Just take a look at our culture; the farther it moves away from biblical values, the more difficultly our Christian experience will be, as we seek to follow Christ in devotion and obedience with all of our heart, mind and will. But resistance grows against the scriptures. A scalpel has already been applied to many sections of our Bible.

It seems to us that at no other time in history do we seem to have so many new topics to bring up in Sermons. The examples of Good vs. Evil. I am sure that this has been the case across human history. It always seems that we are on the brink of disaster. The end of the world as we know it. The devils lie!

So where do we find help to follow Christ when it’s simply not easy to do so? How do we remain faithful when challenges come our way, and our devotion to Christ is tested? 

Thankfully the Bible speaks clearly to this question. In Daniel chapter three, we meet/met Shadrach, Meshack, and Abednego who make it in the face of extreme difficulty. They endure! And they do so because they know and believe the truths about God. The third person in the fiery furnace is a part of who they are.

Our Response to difficulties - Makes All the Difference.

Joshua 1:9 Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. Deuteronomy 31:6,8 Be strong and bold; have no fear or dread of them, because it is the Lord your God who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not fail you or forsake you. 

Pastor Fowler goes on to say: 

But people who are not spiritual can’t receive these truths from God’s Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them and they cannot understand it, for only those who are spiritual can understand what the Spirit means.

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The trials we all face this year, the Pandemic. 

The Medical community is telling us that is taking a toll; Mentally and physically. They tell us that there are so many ways to deal with this situation. Walking, exercising, getting out and meeting others. Keeping our minds active by reading, working on favorite projects, going back to school, and keeping in touch with family and friends.

All of that sounds like great advice. But they left God out of the equation. We as Christians can never do that. We need to keep our nose to the grindstone reading the Bible, doing Bible Studies, Praising God, Telling others about Jesus and his mercy's and strength that he gives us because he will never leave us nor forsake us.

Have you heard the saying “This too will pass?” All we must do is look in our Bible and see this phase is true in the Bible with the men and women there. All we must do is hold on to Christ!

 Sometimes we ask and we beg for answers and they don't come. One thing is for sure. I feel Him in my soul. I trust Him and believe in Him even in my own doubts. I just know it will work out for His good which is my good also (Romans 8:28). I have seen Him work out all kinds of things that I couldn't see happening. He is my God and I will serve Him the best I can until I go to be with Him or he comes to get me.

Do you Believe?

From Pastor Michael MCcartney

Thesis: The Body of Christ needs to learn how to administer “Good Grief” in loss, in crisis and in trauma situations of life. We need to build our lives on the right foundation so that when crisis and trials come, we stand strong in Him and not fall. The question is not really “Where is God when it hurts because we are told in 

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Scripture, He is right there with us.” But the question we must answer is, “How will I respond?”

James 1:2-5:

Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.”

1 Peter 1:6-7:

“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory, and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed”.

We all have and will continue to face issues big and small every day in some form. We need each other as a family of God as a family here at Risen Christ to stay steadfast in the word of God daily. Not once a week or once a month or once a year at Christmas but every day of our lives here in earth.

From Pastor Jeremiah in closing:

The English term tribulation comes from a Latin word meaning” to press or squeeze.” Jesus warned all his followers, ”In the world you will have tribulation: but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33) 

 

 

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 Romans 5: 1-4 

“Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we[a] have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we[b] boast in the hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only so, but we[c] also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope.” 

Jesus tells us that when we are justified by faith, we have:

1.Peace with God – verse 1

2. Access to his unending grace – Verse 2

3. Assurance of Glory – Verse 2

4. Reversal of grief – verses 3-4

Paul wrote” We also glory in tribulation, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance, and perseverance, character, and character, hope. Verses 3-4

That does not mean we’re glad when tribulation comes, It means we’re glad for the knowledge that whenever we find ourselves in trouble, God knows how to manage it and redeem us through the circumstances. Whenever we face troubles, we are in the zone of grace. 

Trust God and let him use trouble to produce perseverance, character, and hope in your heart!

In Jesus Name Amen!