THIS WEEK’S FOCUSED SCRIPTURE
“So we’re not giving up. How could we! Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace. These hard times are small potatoes compared to the coming good times, the lavish celebration prepared for us. There’s far more here than meets the eye. The things we see now are here today, gone tomorrow. But the things we can’t see now will last forever.”
2 Corinthians 4:16-18 MSG
THOUGHTS FROM SAM
In the day that Paul wrote this letter to the church at Corinth, people often kept their most valuable things in plain old jars made of clay. It reminds me of those fake shaving-cream-can-safes with the false bottom, or the old beaten up cigar box full of cash that we might have somewhere around the house. No one would expect to find such valuable treasures in any of these places. Have you ever wondered why God would choose to use us, with all of our faults and failings, to house and deliver the message of the Gospel? On the surface, we might not look like much. As you dig a little deeper, you will see that even though we don’t always get everything right, the Lord comes in to strengthen and encourage us.
When the book of 2 Corinthians was written, the church was struggling. Sound familiar? Paul had great personal troubles. He didn’t always know what to do, but he never lost hope. After he saw that God made Jesus live again after His death, Paul learned to give God thanks and glory for this new life.
What are the areas where you need a boost of hope? Finances? Relationships? Make a list of those today. Take some time to see what the Bible says about each area. Write down reasons to be hopeful and read them every day. Declare God’s promises over your life daily. There are so many resources out there to help you see problems in the light of the Gospel. The You Version Bible App, Pinterest, YouTube, and tons of Bible commentaries and devotionals are at your fingertips. Become an expert on hope, then let that hope spill over into other’s lives.