Daily Devotional for Monday October 14, 2013
Are You Tired of Fighting Life's Battles
***ASK BILL: Pastor Bill, I hear what you have to say today. And in doing so, i.e. this country has gone to hell and God's judgment is coming, why stick around? If you feel lead to stay here and evangelize, good, why should I stay here to be put through the wringer? Why not bug out to another country and watch the bombs drop, epm's hit, or any other way they choose to destroy this place?
ANSWER: This entire world is fallen and flawed. There is no place "safe" and without evil. We know that our lives are but for a moment. The beautiful thing for the child of God is that we can make a difference where God has planted us. We have been called to share our faith and stand for God's Truth no matter where we live. In the end, the only thing that matters for eternity is what we do for the Lord.
"Simon Peter answered him, 'Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God." (John 6:68-69)
Have you ever come to a place where you were tired of fighting life's battles, things weren't working out the way you had hoped or expected and you simply said "This Jesus thing just isn't working." How about coming to that place where you heard what God said on a specific subject and decided that you didn't agree with Him and made the choice to reject God and do it your way. Has there ever been a time when you wanted to quit following Christ and go back to your old life?
The reality is, this is the exact place MANY come to at some point in their journey with the Lord. Based on the emails I get each day, I know there are people reading these words this very moment that are at that EXACT place. In today's anchor verses from the 6th Chapter of John's Gospel, we have the Biblical account of people who were following Jesus, but after hearing Him preach on an issue they didn't agree with, "many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed Him."
In the Book of Acts we hear of a man who was part of Paul's ministry named Demas (Colossians 4:14). We hear of Demas again in 2 Timothy 4 when Paul states, "For Demas, because he loved this world, has deserted me." I remember many years ago preaching a message on Demas and in preparing that message, literally breaking down in tears reading that verse in 2 Timothy 4 about Demas turning his back on the Lord's work to go back into the world. How sad for someone to come to the place, for whatever reason, that they quit Jesus.
This, of course, brings into play the great theological debate regarding eternal security. I am not going to go into depth on this issue today, though I will soon to help those who may be confused about what God's Word teaches regarding if it is possible for someone to lose their salvation. You are free to believe whatever you want about this issue, but the Bible is clear that if you are truly saved by faith in Christ you will always be saved.
Choosing to turn your back on the Lord ruins your joy, robs you of your peace, and causes you to miss the abundance of this life, but you don't lose your salvation. Salvation is a product of your faith in Jesus and God's grace, period. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that God withdraws His grace, which by definition is His unmerited favor, or something you did nothing to earn in the first place. The real key to this issue, something only God knows for certain, is did the person really accept the Lord into their heart and life by faith to begin with.
The thing I have always loved about Peter was that he was a very bottom line kind of guy. He was never shy about stating his opinion, and more often than not that opinion was inspired by God Himself. Here again, we see Peter rise to the occasion when Jesus asked the 12 disciples if they too were going to leave. Peter boldly proclaimed, "To whom shall we go?" For those of you today who are discouraged, thinking about quitting, giving up, turning back, let me ask you the same question Peter did, "WHERE ARE YOU GOING TO GO?"
I love you and care about you so much. You really only have two options, you stick it out with Jesus or you got to satan. There is no other choice. You either follow Jesus or you follow satan. Satan is a liar and his goal is to kill, steal, and destroy. By following satan you will spend all eternity in the Lake of Fire, a place specially created by God for satan and his fallen angels. God is Truth. God wants you to know His peace and joy and the abundance of this life. He loves you unconditionally. He sent Jesus to die for your sins so that you could spend all eternity with Him. As Peter correctly told Jesus, "You have the words of eternal life."
I will be praying for you today. Praying that the next time you get discouraged, the next time you get weary from fighting life's battles, the next time you start thinking how things aren't working out the way you hoped in your life, you will remember the words of Peter, WHERE ARE YOU GOING TO GO? The only place to go is to satan.
Do you really want to go back to the way your life used to be before you started to follow Jesus? My friend, the Lord is your only real hope and your only real answer for this life and all eternity. The trials and tribulations we face are all part of living in this fallen world infested by sin. But take comfort today from the words of Jesus when He told his disciples just hours before gong to the cross, "Be of good cheer, for I have overcome this world!"
We are on the verge of seeing Liveprayer play a major role in bringing God's Truth to the lost and hurting masses and lead this nation into a real revival and back to God and His Truth! Now is the time, this is the moment, and God is calling YOU to help me make a difference in this world by letting Him use your life and all He has entrusted you with to reach those who need Christ's hope and build His Kingdom! Quitting, giving up, turning back IS NOT AN OPTION!
In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ,