Bridge

Don’t Worry, There is a Bridge

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Think of all the different kinds of “daily bread” that can be here today and gone tomorrow: money, house, cars, possessions, jobs, health, and more.  In fact, every tangible thing in our life is something we have no ultimate control over.  And those are the things Jesus said we should never spend time and energy worrying about-which makes perfect sense.  Why worry about those things over which we have no control?

The one thing that cannot be taken away is the only thing we need going forward into the future: our faith and the intangible values (perseverance, hope, and the like) that arise from our faith.  The apostle Paul confirmed the necessity of faith:  “Moreover it is required in stewards that one be found faithful” (1 Corinthians 4:2).  We are stewards (slaves) of the God who has bought us for Himself.  Our provision is His “worry”, not ours.  He has promised to meet the needs of those who love Him.

Don’t worry about tomorrow, Jesus said.  Trust your heavenly Father with the faith you can never lose. 

“Worry over poverty is as fatal to spiritual fruitfulness as is gloating over wealth.”  A. W. Pink

Commentary from Turning Points devotional by David Jeremiah, May 12, 2017.

This song has a country/blues/gospel sound and may not be your taste, and is not necessarily my own, but I appreciate the words, which relate to this post, are meaningful, and I hope helpful 🙂

God On The Mountain, Gaither VEVO, featuring Lynda Randle.

Burden or Bridge

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What word would you use to describe adversity in your life?  To most people, it is a heavy, inescapable burden that wears them down, saps their joy, and hinders them from truly living.  Those that follow Jesus, however, have the opportunity to see adversity as a bridge leading to a glorious eternal future.

The determining factor in how a follower of Jesus views hardship is perspective.  If we focus only on the negative aspects of our earthly life, we’ll be drawn into despair and desperation-a common worldly perspective.  But if we look at problems from an eternal standpoint, our thinking and attitudes will be transformed in the following ways:

  1. Instead of letting difficulties wear us down, we won’t lose heart, because we know we’re being renewed from within (2 Corinthians 4:7-18).  As we respond in submission to whatever God is allowing in our life and trust in His good purposes, our character is shaped into Christlikeness and our hope is restored.
  2. The despair of feeling that our adversity is inescapable and never-ending will be replaced with strength to endure.  Paul said he was afflicted, perplexed, persecuted, struck down, and constantly threatened with death, yet he called it all “light and momentary” compared to eternity (2 Corinthians 4:8-11, 17 NIV).
  3. Rather than seeing adversity as a thief of all joy and a hindrance to a good life, we should look beyond the present to what the trial is producing for us in heaven-“an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison” (v. 17).

Viewing troubles through an eternal lens is an act of faith, which pleases God.  It increases our trust in Him, gives us greater passion for our heavenly inheritance, and strengthens us to victoriously cross the bridge of adversity.

Portions of commentary from Charles Stanley’s In Touch Devotional, November 7, 2017.

Sign

What happened with Jonah?

As the crowds were increasing, He began saying: “This generation is an evil generation.  It demands a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah.  For just as Jonah became a sign to the people of Nineveh, so also the Son of Man will be to this generation.”

Luke 11:29-30

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After Jesus was resurrected, Thomas, a disciple, said that he would not believe his friends, that Jesus had been resurrected, unless he saw Christ in person (John 20:24-25).  So when Jesus showed up, Jesus said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands.  Reach out your hand and put it into my side.  Stop doubting and believe.” (John 20:27)

Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed”. (John 20:29)

A lot of people will say that they would believe in Jesus if they could see a definite sign or a miracle.  We have all the proof we need in the words of the Bible, and the testimony of the those who saw what Christ did when He was here as a man.  It does take a measure of faith, and God can definitely help with this, you only need to ask!

For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they (the Israelites) did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith. (Hebrews 4:2)

We will receive no further signs.  Stop doubting and believe.