Faith Builders

Affliction Prepared For and Improved

"It was good for me to be afflicted--so that I might learn your decrees." Psalm 119:71

As it is the duty of God's children to prepare for affliction before it comes; so it is also their duty to improve affliction when it does come.

If we do not prepare for affliction--we shall be surprised by it;
and, if we do not improve it--we are likely to increase it.

He who would prepare for affliction, must beforehand:
(1.) resign all to God,
(2.) strengthen his graces,
(3.) store up divine promises,
(4.) and search out secret sins.

Prayers for Protection: The Psalms

Below are Psalms you may want to read or pray for protection:
Also see: Prayer for Protection
Prayer for Protection and Guidance

Psalm 16
Preserve me, O God:
for in thee do I put my trust.
O my soul, thou hast said unto the LORD,
Thou art my Lord: my goodness extendeth not to thee;

But to the saints that are in the earth,
and to the excellent, in whom is all my delight.
Their sorrows shall be multiplied that hasten after another god:
their drink offerings of blood will I not offer,
nor take up their names into my lips.

The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup:
thou maintainest my lot.

Are You "Fully Persuaded?"

And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised,
he was able also to perform.
Romans 4:21 KJV

It has been said of Abraham that he was a friend of God and the father of many nations, but what impacts me most about this biblical patriarch is that he was “fully persuaded” that God could and would fulfill His promises, regardless of seemingly impossible circumstances.

Life is Not a Game - Workshop TranscriptPremium Content

note: Members may discuss this workshop in the Message Boards HERE

Obie-Host Hello and welcome to CIR's latest Workshop:
"Life is Not a Game: Rules, rebellion, and freedom as a follower of Jesus" given by Rich Dixon.
Rich is a respected speaker and the author of "Relentless Grace: God’s Invitation To Give Hope Another Chance".
You are invited to visit Rich's web site: http://www.relentlessgrace.com
where you can learn more about Rich and his writings and you can also purchase his book.
You may download the booklet for free which this workshop is about here:

We will open with prayer, after which Rich will speak for several minutes. When he is through speaking

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Taking the First Step: You Have the Key

You look ahead with such despair
and feel all hope is gone,
for life has been so difficult
already you feel worn.

But living life in happiness
is not so hard to do,
first make somebody happy
and joy will come to you.

But if you fear rejection
of love you have to give
and fear to reach your hand out
you'll never learn to live.

The first step is the hardest,
just take it and you'll see
that life is worth the living
for now you hold the key.
~ Ruth March 1978

Jesus the Optimist?Premium Content

Is Jesus an optimist? How about His followers?

I’ve been writing this week about optimism. I created A Reluctant Optimist’s Code in an attempt to counteract my natural inclination to perceive that The Half Empty Glass Is Leaking.

Today I’m wondering what the Bible says about my half-baked ideas. Since I just posted my list of 100 Significant Scriptures that shape my personal theology, I started there.

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100 Significant ScripturesPremium Content

This is easily the longest article I’ve ever written. Check out the next few sentences and you’ll see why.

A while back someone asked me to define my “life verse.”

I suppose if I HAD to choose a single passage I’d pick Romans 8:28.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

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The Half Empty Glass Is LeakingPremium Content

Do you consider yourself an optimist? Why (or why not)?

I'm doing a talk this week for an Optimist Club, so I'm thinking about optimism. I did a little research to find out what optimism is, where it originates, why some folks have it and some don't.

Frankly, for much of my life I was a confirmed pessimist. I not only saw the glass as half-empty, but I was certain it was leaking and eventually would be completely dry.

I was the second person in this exchange.

Optimist:"This is the best of all possible worlds."

Pessimist: "If that's the case, then things can never get any better."

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Why Read The Bible?Premium Content

Why do you read the Bible?

I suppose answers vary with individual needs and life’s seasons. At different moments we seek knowledge, inspiration, encouragement, comfort, and guidance.

When I thought through this idea (I actually do that occasionally) I wondered if there was a single, best, right answer. Since The Bible Is About God I was going to offer something profound like “…acquiring a better, more intimate knowledge of God” (thanks Clark).

It’s always comforting to have a nice, tidy answer to such a complex question, even if it’s far too simplistic.

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He is AllPremium Content

You're my music in the morning
You're the joy that brings the dawn
You're the sun that warms our faces
When the winter's bearing on
Warm me 'til my lonely shivering
Heart's inspired to kneel and pray
And I look to joyful dawning
On that final brightest day.

In tumultuous times of trouble
May we still Your songs employ
To dispel the growing darkness
That would all our faith destroy
When we feel our strength receding
May we still then seek Your face
In the midst of our heart's bleeding
Send us oceans of Your grace.

You pour out Your sweet libations
Lord how great Thou truly art
Onto thirsty errant nations
Your sweet fragrance You impart
Lead us to the Living Water

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