The Hope of the Resurrection
But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. 1 Thessalonians 4:13.
To the afflicted ones I would say, be of good comfort in the hope of the resurrection morning. The waters of which you have been drinking are as bitter to your taste as were the waters of Marah to the children of Israel in the wilderness, but Jesus can make them so sweet with His love....
God has provided a balm for every wound. There is a balm in Gilead, there is a Physician there. Will you not now as never before study the Scriptures? Seek the Lord for wisdom in every emergency. In every trial plead with Jesus to show you a way out of your troubles, then your eyes will be opened to behold the remedy and to apply to your case the healing promises that have been recorded in His Word. In this way the enemy will find no place to lead you into mourning and unbelief, but instead you will have faith and hope and courage in the Lord. The Holy Spirit will give you clear discernment that you may see and appropriate every blessing that will act as an antidote to grief, as a branch of healing to every draught of bitterness that is placed to your lips. Every draught of bitterness will be mingled with the love of Jesus, and in place of complaining of the bitterness, you will realize that Jesus’ love and grace are so mingled with sorrow that it has been turned into subdued, holy, sanctified joy.
When Henry White, our eldest son, lay dying, he said, “A bed of pain is a precious place when we have the presence of Jesus.” When we are obliged to drink of the bitter waters, turn away from the bitter to the precious and the bright. In trial grace can give the human soul assurance, and when we stand at the deathbed and see how the Christian can bear suffering and go through the valley of death, we gather strength ... and we fail not, neither are we discouraged in leading souls to Jesus.
Up until now you may have considered yourself a fairly humble person. However, this short “Healthy Heart Challenge” is sure to challenge you in new ways, as you seek to go deeper in your walk with Christ. Remember, true revival can’t begin until we recognize how desperately we need Christ to change our hearts. Then as we fall broken at the foot of the Cross, surrendering our pride and self-sufficiency to Him, it is His joy to encircle us in the arms of His love, and make us new creatures that will display His glory!
In a stirring message, Sebastien Braxton challenges young people to step up to the plate and be the generation that will stand for the Lord. It's easy to get lost in the distractions of life, in the spiritual confusion that is taking over the world, but God has called us to rise up and be counted. This is a must-hear message for anyone who loves God's church.
How welcoming is your church? Is it a safe and inviting place for visitors to come? How can you make it even more welcoming for strangers that might walk through the door? In this practical and relevant article from Ministry Magazine, Alan Parker breaks down five keys to help church members be more effective in their welcome and witness.