Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Where’s My Hope

Some of you are in what could be referred to as a difficult marriage.  For some of you that may be a gross understatement.  I have had some firsthand experience due to the illness of my first wife and a great deal of second hand experience as a counselor.
 
What is missing, among other things, is joy and the hope that things will get better.   This need not be the case if you are a “born again” Christian.  I must make a brief departure at this point.  I am differentiating between someone who has a new life in Christ and what John Piper refers to as a “cultural Christian.”  It is not my place to offend or judge, just be aware that there is a difference.  For all intents and purposes the cultural Christian’s behavior might mimic some of the behaviors of a born again Christian, i.e. attend church regularly, give to the church, volunteer in the nursery, etc.  But there is little evidence of the Fruit of the Spirit; little time is spent with the Lord outside of Sunday morning; and an occasional prayer might be offered, particularly in trying circumstances.

The born again Christian has a thirst for God’s Word.  They accept that without the Holy Spirit they are powerless.  They recognize that as Scripture says Christ is the vine and we are but the branches, all power comes from our relationship with Christ.  This does not mean that the born again Christian won’t face struggles and difficult times.  However they believe that God is with them in the midst of the storm.  He wants the born again Christian to have victory because “in all things (they) are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”  Romans 8:37

The Bible tells of a woman who suffered from hemorrhaging for 12 years.  This probably means more to women than it does men but trust me guys this would be your worst nightmare.  This didn’t stop her from reaching out to the One who she believed could help her - Jesus.  There is a reason this story is in the Bible.  While it is true that we can’t touch the Lord’s garment we are indwelt by His Spirit. “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?”

In those most difficult times we must be able to turn to the Lord and believe that “(we) can do all things through Him who strengthens “(us).  Philippians 4:13

He can and will deliver us from the challenges of life.  Hebrews 12:11 tells us that “because He himself suffered when He was being tested, He is able to help those who are being tested.”  For the born again Christian these are more than just words, they are a promise from the God of Universe, the Creator of all things, the great Healer.

 

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