Merry Christmas to the Oldies of Sheepgate and to the Newbies! Without you, there would be no Gate!
I get very sentimental during this time of year. I think about past years gone by and how fleeting they truly are and how our lives can change in a nano second. Most of all I think about the goodness of God in my life. Yes, even while going through the valleys I am still aware of how good God is to me. You see, God never promised believers an easy road when you accepted His Son. In fact, Jesus said "count the cost." There is a cost to following Christ. There will be times when you will be made fun of, they will try to shame you, take your zeal away from you and persecute you in so many ways. Jesus said, "If they persecute me, they will persecute you! If they believe me, they will believe you!" There will be times of exhilarating joy and then, along comes a dose of discouragement. Many feel they take 5 steps ahead and take 4 backwards. But, you are still moving ahead. Those 4 steps backward is where you are learning what God is teaching you. Next time it might be only 3 steps back.
Never give up. If you've prayed for something very precious and have been waiting for it, what seems to be a long time; so many times the answer is only 1 week away. If you give up, you won't be able to see the answer when it comes. Use the faith that has been given to you and expect your answer. Allow your hope to water the faith inside of your heart!
Remember one thing this year:
Romans 8:31-39New Living Translation (NLT)
Nothing Can Separate Us from God’s Love
31 What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? 32 Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else? 33 Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? No one—for God himself has given us right standing with himself. 34 Who then will condemn us? No one—for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.
35 Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? 36 (As the Scriptures say, “For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.”) 37 No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.