If the disciples had not listened to the voice urging them against all common sense to throw the net on the other side of the boat, they would have missed the excitement of witnessing a miracle. If I had given into my fear and ignored my Dad’s encouragement to jump, I would have missed the adventure and thrill of diving.
Despair following success can impact anyone: entertainers, athletes, preachers and teachers. A surge of success followed by a period of despondency and anguish. Why? It doesn’t make sense… or does it. Are successes always followed by bouts of despair? Of course not, yet it happens frequently enough to ask questions and seek guidance.
When people ask me why they should come to church or participate in various ministries or small groups? My answer: To learn how to be a better Christian when being a better Christian is hard: Practicing forgiveness is the hardest of all.
These everyday life-changing miracles bear testimony that churches are far from boring. Some of the most exciting and fulfilling moments of my life are directly related to a church or church member. If you have been away from church for a while, for whatever reason, maybe it’s time to reconsider. Those life-changing moments are happening all around you.
The Wesley Brothers failed trip to Georgia ended up being a catalyst that led them to form the Methodist movement which has become one of the larger denominations within Christianity. Saint Simons understandably takes pride in being the only area in America visited by the Wesleys. A trip that on the surface was a failure, yet this failure led to founding a movement that impacted and deepened the lives of millions of Christians.
A critical part of reconciliation is a willingness to honestly communicate your feelings but with humility and love. It’s important to set aside your ego and be ready to listen to the other person’s perspective. Understanding both sides can prevent future misunderstandings.
She then said: “God strengthens us with power through His Spirit. Christ dwells in your hearts through faith. Being rooted and established in love, you have power. To grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ.” She then passed the box around the room again and said: “Pull out one slip of paper and read it to us. After reading it, tape the statement to the outside of the box.”
If only life could be more like the Popeye cartoon. Surrounded by overwhelming burdens, you shout: “That’s all I can stands, and I can’t stands no more!” Our relationship with God can be similar to a Popeye cartoon… sort of a “Spinach Theology.” We’ve withstood all we can bear so in desperation we turn to God, open up our Bible and say the most famous prayer in history: “Help!”
Here is the best part. Because we have a light shining in our hearts; because our jars contain a great treasure; we may be pressed by troubles but not crushed; perplexed but not driven to despair; hunted down but never abandoned. Storms and earthquakes may damage but we are never destroyed.