Doubt/Weak Faith

What Should My Response to Suffering Be?

2 Thessalonians 1:3-8 NRSV
We must always give thanks to God for you, brothers and sisters, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of everyone of you for one another is increasing. Therefore we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith during all your persecutions and the afflictions that you are enduring. This is evidence of the righteous judgment of God, and is intended to make you worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are also suffering. For it is indeed just of God to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to give relief to the afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.

It’s interesting that Paul doesn’t address the persecutions of the Thessalonians in the same way that we often address persecutions. If you think about it, most pastors tell us that our faith is exemplified when we take authority over Satan and believe that our trials will disappear based on God’s love. But Paul, rather than preaching that, says that faith is based on persevering through afflictions.

We need to ask ourselves what we believe.

Fly to Him


Learn the Divine skill of making God all things to you. He can supply you with all; or, better still, He can be to you instead of all.

Let me urge you, then, to make use of your God. Make use of Him in prayer; go to Him often, because He is your God. Will you fail to use so great a privilege?

Fly to Him; tell Him all your wants. Use Him constantly by faith at all times. If some dark providence has beclouded you, use your God as a "sun"; if some strong enemy has beset you, find in Jehovah a "shield"; for He is a sun and a shield to His people. If you have lost your way in the mazes of life, use Him as a "guide"; for He will direct you.

Profiting from the Scriptures

(1) For one thing, begin reading your Bible this very day. The way to do a thing--is to do it; and the way to read the Bible--is actually to read it! It is not merely meaning, or wishing, or resolving, or intending, or thinking about it--which will advance you one step. You must positively read. There is no royal road in this matter, any more than in the matter of prayer. If you cannot read yourself, you must persuade somebody else to read it to you. But one way or another, through eyes or ears--the words of Scripture must actually pass before your mind.

(2) For another thing, read the Bible with an earnest desire to understand it. Do not think for a moment, that the great object is to turn over a certain quantity of printed paper, and that it matters nothing whether you understand it or not. Some ignorant people seem to imagine, that all is done if they advance so many chapters every day, though they may not have a notion what they are all about, and only know that they have pushed on their bookmark ahead so many pages. This is turning Bible reading into a mere ritual form. It is almost as bad as the Popish habit of 'buying

When Bad Things Happen to Good People

Job 42:7 MRSV
After the Lord had spoken these words to Job, the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite: "My wrath is kindled against you and against your two friends; for you have not spoken of me what is right, as my servant Job has."

Job was a righteous man, a man who loved and served God with all his heart and might. He was a man who had prospered in an earthly sense, owning many flocks and having twelve children. He also was a man blessed with good health. All of this God allowed Satan to take from Job. Job’s life went, in a matter of days, from being comfortable and happy to being alone and miserable.

There is a saying: Bad things happen to good people.

Life is Messy, Sloppy, Sometimes Miserable

Isaiah 43:10-13
"But you are my witnesses, O Israel!" says the Lord. "And you are my servant. You have been chosen to know me, believe in me, and understand that I alone am God. There is no other God; there never has been and never will be. I am the Lord, and there is no other Savior. First I predicted your deliverance; I declared what I would do, and then I did it -- I saved you. No foreign god has ever done this before. You are witnesses that I am the only God," says the Lord. "From eternity to eternity I am God. No one can oppose what I do. No one can reverse my actions" (NLT).

When We Have to Wait

James 1:17
Every generous act of giving, with every perfect gift, is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.

I'd like to say that I hate to waste time. I mean, I can sit in meetings and fume at how slow everything goes and what inane questions others ask. I can be just as impatient with Father God Who is -- according to my way of thinking -- working much too slowly and holding me back from my life's ambitions.

The fact is, I hate to wait. But, if I am truly honest, it's more that I want to control my time and my efforts. I want to lallygag and waste time when I want to

Prayer for the Heavy Hearted

Abba...I sense many heavy hearts today. Hearts that are burdened and weighed down by what they are seeing and experiencing.

For some, it seems as if the world is closing in on them and coming against them at every turn. Nothing they are trying to do turns out well and some are even wondering in their hearts where You are in all of this. They are battling discouragement as they walk in the way they believe You have sent them. They are trying to minister to others with seemingly no to little success. They are being faithful, yet wondering if You might actually have abandoned them. They so need Your reassurance and a sense of Your Presence.

Are You Overwhelmed by Your Fears?

Is fear controlling your life? This booklet will help.

Do You Rely On the Lord?

2 Chronicles 16:7-9 NRSV
At that time the seer Hanani came to King Asa of Judah, and said to him, "Because you relied on the king of Aram, and did not rely on the Lord your God, the army of the king of Aram has escaped you. Were not the Ethiopians and the Libyans a huge army with exceedingly many chariots and cavalry? Yet because you relied on the Lord, he gave them into your hand. For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the entire earth, to strengthen those whose heart is true to Him. You have done foolishly in this; for from now on you will have wars."

The Sun Seemed Quite Blocked

The sun seemed quite blocked
By cloud of unknowing,
In anguish I'm locked
Miles apart from God's glowing,
In sorrow I sit
Adrift and decaying,
I turn on the spit,
I'm split, God's filleting.

If tincture of time
Could evict my inversion,
I'd wait for sublime
And unblemished conversion,
But something inside,
Unsettled, is gnawing,
Where visions collide
An insistence is pawing.

Alert to the call
I rotate an ear,
From under the pall
A snippet I hear,
The tiniest clue,
No more than a tinkling,
Light as the dew,
A fairy dust sprinkling.

God in His subtle,
Mysterious way,
Had deigned a rebuttal

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