TODAY'S WORD FOR Wednesday, December 18, 2019:
Subjection to suffering or grief, tribulation or distress.
These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you and that your joy may be full.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
What would it take to rattle your faith in Jesus Christ? We often ask ourselves -- if we are reading the Bible and communicating to God through prayer and then meditating on what we read -- if that is enough for Him to listen to us and speak to us so that we will become more Christ-like.
Our world is truly mixed up and everywhere we turn the emphasis is on evil ideas and not biblical ideas. That deeply concerns us. Jesus was not kidding us when He warned, “In the world you will have tribulation” John 16:33. Tribulation and trials, just like the scriptures says, is playing out all around us one way or another.
So, the question for us is, “How are we to retain our faith in Christ and experience His joy in our lives in the world we live in?” The fact is that only God can give us the joy that lasts in spite of insurmountable losses, difficult people and adverse circumstances.
Jesus had His share of trials that He had to face while on this earth. Jesus was mocked, ridiculed, betrayed, plotted against, rejected, spit upon, beaten and nailed to a cross suffering a most excruciating painful death.
The most difficult of all was taking our sins on Himself. In that moment “God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that we might become the righteousness of God,” Jesus was separated from God His Father. “Yet in spite of knowing the agony He was about to endure, the writer of Hebrews 12:2 records that Jesus as He approached Calvary to die on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins, He did so with joy.
Jesus was one with the Father and was completely in agreement with the Father and He willingly endured the agony of dying on the cross, carrying the sins of all humanity on His shoulders, to accomplish His Father’s will.
Because we, as believers in Jesus, are children of God, He has given us an inheritance -- the same joy that Christ had no matter what situation we face, if we do His will. Jesus said in John 15:11: “These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you and that your joy may be full.”
WOW -- what a promise! No matter what our circumstances if we have a close relationship with Jesus, we will know the joy of living for Jesus.
Our memory verse for this week is found in Proverbs 11:27.
He who earnestly seeks good finds favor, but trouble will come to him who seeks evil.
Help me to stay focused on You daily and be obedient to Your commandments so that I may know the joy of living for Jesus even in the midst of life’s trials.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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