What God Wants You to Know About the Christian Life
In your Christian faith, have you ever come to a point when you’ve thought there just has to be more to this whole Christianity thing, but had no idea what it was or where to find it?
I entertained that question myself, literally spending years searching for answers. I somehow knew there was more, but didn’t know what it was, or where to find it. I attended every seminar and every conference I could find that claimed it could teach me how to make my life count or show me how to find more fulfillment in this life, but still nothing answered my questions.
There's got to be more to the Christian life, but what is it?
Well, if you're wondering what I was wondering, I have some great news to share with you! It’s found in Romans 5, one of my favorite chapters of the Bible. As you read through the verses, you'll discover that the Apostle Paul uses the phrase “much more” four times, and twice, he says, “and not only this...”
Throughout the verses of chapter 5 the Apostle Paul starts off by making some incredible statements, except he doesn’t stop there, he continues by adding, “And you think that was good? Wait until you hear what’s next!” And then he proceeds to tell us what the “much more” is.
In the first few verses he explains that as a result of being made righteous, we now have peace with God. Now that in itself is amazing, isn’t it? Think about that…
You and God are at peace.
He's not mad at you, He's not expecting more from you, and He is not disappointed with you. Everything is cool between you and God - you're at peace. Isn’t that incredible?!
Paul doesn’t stop there though, he continues, “Well, you think that's great news? Listen to this!” And he goes on to tell us that we also exalt in our tribulations; knowing that our tribulation brings about perseverance, perseverance brings about proven character, and proven character brings about hope.
You see, we are all too familiar with the suffering that takes place in the world we live in, right? Sickness, death, financial stress, strained relationships - the list is endless. Both believers and unbelievers suffer, it’s common to all of us, there's no difference. But without God, suffering is just suffering. There's no meaning in it, it's just pain.
But with God, our suffering is purposeful. God does not waste our suffering.
He takes our pain and gives it meaning and purpose as only God can do.
And because He does this, we can rejoice in our suffering - more precisely, we rejoice in what God is producing from it: perseverance, proven character, and hope.
What a message! I hope it encourages you today.