Tuesday, April 24, 2007
The following was written by Steve Troxel of God's Daily Word Ministries. It showed up in my email this morning but mirrors, at least in general terms, a conversation we had in small group last night.

We begin our Christian life in faith; "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith" (Ephesians 2:8). And just as we begin our life in faith, so we must also continue to walk in faith; "Just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in Him"
(Colossians 2:6). We are to live in Christ, and continue to walk with Him, in the same manner as we received Him...in faith.

We cannot come to Christ without faith and we're unable to live a victorious Christian life without continuously walking in faith. Our faith is of great worth!

1 Peter 1:6-7
"For a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith - of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire - may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed."

One of the beautiful truths in God's Kingdom is that everything along our walk has a purpose; "In all things God works for the good of those who love Him" (Romans 8:28). Even our difficult times of hardship and trial are being directed by God "for the good." As we continue to love Him with all our heart, God will use our trials to reveal and strengthen our faith. And a truer understanding of our faith is one of the greatest "goods" we can receive.

Do we really believe our faith is "of greater worth than gold"? Until we've been sustained through times of great trial and testing, it's difficult to understand the true value of faith. Our faith is shown to be real ("proved genuine") only as we trust Him when no other hope can be seen. We never need to prove our faith to God - He sees deep within our heart and already knows the genuineness of our faith. God gave us our faith and calls us to live "in accordance with the measure of faith God has given" (Romans 12:3).

But our measure of faith is ALWAYS greater than what we believe we have, and can sustain us through greater trials than we believe possible. As we more clearly see the strength contained in this wonderful gift of faith, we are able to give all praise, glory and honor to God as Jesus is revealed through the testimony of our life. As we trust Him with all our heart, He will cause us to emerge from our trials much stronger and more confident, more "mature and complete, not lacking anything" (James 1:4), because we will KNOW He is by our side.

As our faith is strengthened and refined, the presence of God will cease to be an interesting theory or an empty hope; it will become real and an integral part of our life! Let's rejoice that our trials last only "for a little while." But let's also rejoice that our trials are being used for His glory and for the purpose of proving our faith.

  posted at 7:48 AM  


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Todd M


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