The church is not just an institution or a mere social club. It is where we, who have been brought near to God and washed from sin, can help one another grow in Christ-likeness. The purpose of meeting together as a corporate body is to exhort and encourage one another (Heb. 10: 19-25).
No believer can function alone. To live as our Lord Jesus wants us to, we need the community of believers. As you meet with other believers, think of who you can come along-side and encourage by your words and actions to be more like the Christ we love and serve.
Before our Father’s throne
We Pour our ardent prayers;
Our fears, our hopes, our aims are one,
Our comforts and our cares. —Fawcett
A healthy Church is the best witness to a hurting world!
Condensed Article by C. P. Hia, Our Daily Bread, Copyright 2013 by RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved. Further distribution is prohibited without written permission from RBC Ministries
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Blessings: The Good and The Bad
The story of the rebellious prophet Jonah shows us how God desires to use both blessings and trials to challenge us and change us for the better. Five times in the book of Jonah it says that the Lord prepared circumstances for him—both good and bad.
In Jonah 1:4 we read that the Lord sent a storm. It says He “sent out a great wind on the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea.” After the mariners discovered that Jonah was the reason for this storm, they threw him overboard (1:15). Then God “prepared a great fish to swallow Jonah” to save him from drowning (1:17)
Later in the book we read the “the Lord God prepared a plant” to shade Jonah (4:6). Then we see that God prepared a worm to kill the vine as well as a scorching wind and sun to beat down upon him (4:7-9). These circumstances were used to reveal Jonah’s rebellious attitude. Only after that revelation could God directly confront Jonah’s heart problem.
As we face different situations, we should remember that God is sovereign over both the blessings and the troubles that come our way. He desires to use everything to build our character (James 1:1-5). He uses both good and bad to transform us and guide us on our journey.
The Maker of the universe
Knows every need of man,
And made provision for that need
According to His plan. –Crane
The Lord gives and takes away. Blessed be the Lord.
Article by Dennis Fisher, Our Daily Bread, Copyright 2013 by RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved. Further distribution is prohibited without written permission from RBC Ministries
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