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A Vertical Moment

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The Christian Life

The Christian life is not all hardship. Paul and Barnabas were in Salamis, a city in Cyprus. The leaders of the Synagogue actually asked them to preach. Paul ended his sermon with this: "Through [Jesus] forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, and by him everyone who believes is freed from everything from which you could not be freed by the law of Moses.” Acts (13:38). They should've been booed off stage, right? Insisting that Jesus could forgive sins and that the Law of Moses wasn’t enough? Here’s the crowd’s response: “[they] begged that these things might be told them the next Sabbath. And after the meeting of the synagogue broke up, many Jews and devout converts to Judaism followed Paul and Barnabas…” (v. 42). “The next Sabbath almost the whole city gathered to hear the word of the Lord.” (v. 44). 

But this isn’t always how the life of a disciple goes either. The Christian life isn't all outward victory. "[The Jews] were filled with jealousy and began to contradict what was spoken by Paul, reviling him.” (v. 46).

"But the Jews incited the devout women of high standing and the leading men of the city, stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and drove them out of their district.” (v.50) This may have been physical harm or just preventing them from speaking.

Whether we're a part of jaw-dropping displays of the power of God, or are being pushed down and pushed out by persecution or suffering, there's one thing that the Christian life always is: joy. “…they shook off the dust from their feet against them and went to Iconium. And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.” (vv.50,51)

The Christian life is not all hardship. It is not all outward victory. But the Christian life is all joy. During times of victory, ask God that He alone would be the root of your pleasure. In times of pain and loss, ask Him to overflow your heart with satisfaction in Him so that you can say, “It is well with my soul."

Posted by Grayson H. with 0 Comments

Vertical Value

“Fear not, therefore, you are of more value than many sparrows.” – Matthew 10:31
 
Unless we have beheld the beauty of God and seen His glory displayed through the matchless worth of Jesus Christ, we will not be amazed, undone or comforted by the fact that He VALUES us! Colossians 1:15-23 is a powerful passage that unveils the preeminence of Christ:
 
He is the image of the invisible God!
He is the firstborn over all creation!
He created all things!
He holds all things together!
He is before all things!
He is the head of the body!
He is the beginning!
He is the firstborn from the dead!
In Him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell!
He reconciled all things to Himself!
He made peace by His blood shed on the cross!
 
What a precious Savior we have! If we only read Scripture for ourselves, and not to see God’s revelation of Himself, then we have totally missed the point and the truths of His Word will not have lasting impact on our lives.
           
Meditate on His worth and beauty today and be undone by the way He loves you! The One with matchless value, Whose value cannot be measured, values you. He values the eternal lives represented in the sea of faces that surround us daily. Because He is unchanging, the value He puts on us is unchanging. Meditate on His worth today, and be undone by the way He values you!

Posted by Mary S. with 0 Comments

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