Life is difficult to navigate. Adversity is a common part of life, yet now, having been called by God, we must work hard to overcome and conquer these challenges.
The rigors God puts us through are not to crush us, but to shape us, transforming us into His image. True gain is walking through the anguish in victory.
John Ritenbaugh gives us empathy for the apostle Paul, graphically portraying his physical hardships involving more than 6,500 miles of perilous foot- and sea-travel. Through the eyes of various secular, contemporary histories, we vicariously experience his difficulties working his trade, problems with lawless communities, …
Affliction is a necessary aspect of life, yielding strength of character, while ease and comfort weaken us. Christ was perfected as High Priest through suffering.
God uses trials to test our hearts, but He never places a trial before us to tempt us. God uses trials we bring on ourselves to draw us closer to Him.
Terry Fox pursued his 'Marathon of Hope' to raise money for cancer research, running in effect 143 consecutive marathons. His example teaches us many things.
It offends our sense of justice to see the wicked prospering while the righteous suffer. We may need to adjust our expectations for leading an easy life.
Joseph knew and recognized his brothers before they knew him, even as God knows our guiltiest secret sins that we think we have effectively hidden.
How involved in man's affairs is God? Is He merely reactive, or does He actively participate—even cause events and circumstances, particularly in the church?
Ecclesiastes teaches us to rejoice when times are good and to reflect soberly when times are bad. Adversity is a tool God uses to create something beautiful.
The most dangerous lap we encounter is when everyone around us tends to be compromising. Today, what was once aberrant behavior is now considered normal.
Solomon exercised a lifetime of hard work trying to find answers, but fell short because some things are discoverable only through God's revelation.
We need to give thanks for everything, blessings and trials. Christianity ought to be an exhilarating experience, but it depends on our outlook on life.
John Ritenbaugh, continuing his exposition on Ecclesiastes, focuses on three interrelated terms: paradox (something contrary to expectation), conundrum (a riddle), and wisdom (skill in arts, such as Bezalel and Oholiab who were gifted in a specific skill—or spiritual insight). We are called into the body of Christ gifted …
We cannot assume that we are going to be immune from tough times and persecution, but we need to ask God for the strength to endure what He gives us to endure.
Paul wrote some of his most optimistic letters from prison, under the possibility of execution, but absolutely convinced that ultimate victory was imminent.