5 Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have obtained access to this grace in which we stand; and we boast in our hope of sharing the glory of God. 3 And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 5 and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.
Let’s give the Men’s ministry a hand for all their hard work and good food last week on our Men’s day celebration.
Last week Rev. Dr. Timothy Gramling. called our attention to: 2 Chronicles 7:14 NLT
“Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.”
He went on to say:
Living life on Earth comes with Struggles
Especially when we turn our backs on God.
Jesus said you will have tribulations, you will have sorrows, Do not forget that Peace comes with God. Do not be afraid of the battles. In the end we will win if we believe in God.
Point #1 The Struggle is real but Are you real with your struggles?
- to live right, eat right, think right
- Stay peaceful in our heart
- forgive others
- to walk a long side hurting people
- to hold our tongues and maintain peace
- to Renew our mind; stay positive, hopeful, faithful, kind, patient, good, loving, joyful, and tempered.
- with staying positive.- Is your glass half full
I posted a picture a couple weeks ago that said:
So one of my struggles is learning to shut my mouth, this also translates into not texting or emailing or commenting on post on social media.
If you have a struggle raise your hand. Thank your neighbor for being honest
We Struggle with:
How to handle a certain situation or person
Accepting people as they are
Not telling someone where they can go and how they can get there
Talking during or after a conflict
To do what is best for everyone or the greater good, not just what we want
Taking care of ourselves
With work and finances
With Teachers, classes and school
With sex, sexuality and matters of the heart
With transition and change, even if they are positive and new.
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
Point #2 Do you Have courage but to do the work?
We know that Jesus came so that we would have life and have it more abundantly but He did not drop it off and walk away like Santa Clause.
(WAY, TRUTH, LIGHT)
We have access, help and direction, Instruction, Illumination, Clarity
With all that we have we still have to do the work.
Do you have equipment to help you; work out, think better, relax, and/or help you with any struggle, (DVDs, books, CDs and even VHS tapes)
How many of them actually use them?
How many are sitting in the garage, count on your fingers and hold them up?
There are 5 stages of change
Maintenance- (Relapse, Recommit, Reconfirm, Recycle, Repeat)
Only you can know where you are in the process with any struggle you have
You can buy every- material things but you still have to do the work, until you do they will keep collecting dust and your struggle will remain.
Like the scripture says: Romans 5:3b to 5a
knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 5 and hope does not disappoint us,
It takes time to internalize each lesson.
Then put it into practice
Then keep practicing until it becomes second nature.
1 Corinthians 13:11 NLT
11 When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things.
Some of us are still working on:
Putting away some of our childhood.
Some things are heavier than others
Unpacking some of the baggage that was a bi-product of our childhood.
Some of us are going through struggles that others may have gone through as a child
Whereas are others maybe going through struggles that previous generations never had to face.
Some struggle with trying to fix people around us instead dealing with our own issues.
Matthew 7:3-5New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
3 Why do you see the speck in your neighbor’s[a] eye, but do not notice the log in your own eye? 4 Or how can you say to your neighbor,[b] ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ while the log is in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your neighbor’s[c] eye.
Let us stop judging others, putting people down, talking bad about them behind their back, sending letters campaigns, and spend more time focusing on loving one another through our struggles.
There is but one control in the fruit of the spirit which is SELF-CONTROL.
Self control leads to situational control.
Paul handles this so very graciously in Philippians 3. He says in verse 25-16
15 All of us, then, who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. 16 Only let us live up to what we have already attained.
Let’s trust God will help everyone in his time.
Point #3. God will meet you where you are! You are never alone in your struggle.
Turn with me to John 14:15-21 Highlight underline and follow along
Jesus Promised the Holy Spirit
15. If you love me, you will obey what I command. 16. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another counselor to be with you forever. 17. The spirit of TRUTH the world cannot accept Him because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19. Before long, the world will not see me anymore but you will see me. Because I live you also will live. 10. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me and I am in you.
You will continue to be challenged. The continued renewing of your mind is necessary.
When I was a child
God is with you in your struggle, He will help you do the work.
Each struggle is a test, a test leads to a testimony and each testimony helps us conquer the enemy; by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony.
When we share our testimony with others we give them encouragement to see how power and present God is.
If you have some struggles that you want to lay before the altar right now I will pray with you. Your church family will pray with you and Jesus will pray with you.
Now to Him who is able to keep you from falling and to present faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, to the God our Savior be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever.
And the church Said Amen