Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Rejoicing At Christmas Time

Romans 5:3-5

3Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.

RayMcD

As Christmas comes – rejoicing is something we should practice. Rejoicing at Christmas Time is very important – because it is a season for rejoicing.

The scriptures are filled with passages about rejoicing. I sense a need to remind us – our congregation and our readers – of the need to rejoice in the Lord. At times life can pile up on us and we need to release and rejoice. We need to rejoice in all seasons of life. God is good – all the time – and all the time – God is good!

Has the unexpected ever happened in your life? I bet the answer is yes. The unexpected – by definition – would be when something happens when we least expect it. Like a baseball pitcher who can throw a curve ball in a fastball count – catching the batter off guard (sorry but I can’t wait for baseball season).

We try to be prepared for every contingency in life – but some times we are caught off guard. I just celebrated the life of a seemingly healthy 47 year-old who suddenly died. It caught his family completely by surprise.

The passage today tells us to rejoice – even in our sufferings – because suffering produces perseverance – the ability to withstand the suffering.

Have we ever noticed that the more we go through things in life – the more prepared we are when things happen? I mean – we get use to things. When we first dive into the ocean or a pool – it might be cold or chilly – but soon our body adjusts and we are OK. When we are working out – running – or doing a cardiovascular machine like an elliptical machine – we might have a hard time getting started -but normally we hit our second wind and seem to enter a zone – where we could go on and on if we wanted.

When we keep our eyes on Jesus – and not the moment or moments of suffering – we know that suffering produces perseverance – perseverance produces character – and character produces hope. And hope does not disappoint us – because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit – whom He has given us.

Just something for us to think about today as we go on our way.

 

 

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December 21, 2016 - Posted by | Advent Thought, Build, Christmas, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , ,

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