Friday, August 23, 2013

DAY 461 - Are You Ready to Swim against The Tide? (請按此處收聼廣東話Cantonese podcast click here)

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Today's Reading: Romans 5:1-5

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Please click this link to read Romans 5:1-5

Bible Study

      From chapter 1 to 4, Paul is pointing everything towards God's promise to all through Jesus Christ that we are being declared in the right, we are being justified by our faith. And, at the centre of everything being discussed, we have peace with God! It is a brand new personal relationship with God, our Heavenly Father. What does that mean? Paul says, "Well, you are in a new and personal relationship, but you are going to be in a new season of life."  

Bishop N.T. Wright's says (

     When we are reconciled to the God who is our father, we discover that he wants not simply to enjoy this one-to-one relationship, but to enlist us in his service in working for his kingdom.  And that will bring all kinds of pressures and problems which will require us to hang on in faith and hope even when we don't sense his presence, even when it doesn't 'feel' as though there's anything happening.  We mustn't imagine that our feeling of being close to God is a true index of the reality.  Emotions often deceive.  Paul is summoning us to understand the reality, the solid rock beneath the shifting sands of feeling...
     We celebrate in our sufferings.  He sees a steady progression in which God uses our sufferings for the same purpose as he gives us his own presence and love: to transform us into the truly human people we were made to be.  The progression leads from patience to character, and from character to hope...The gospel of Jesus the Messiah calls us to swim against the tide on all counts. 

N.T. Wright. Paul for Everyone: Romans:Part12. Louisville,KY:Westminster John Knox Press, 2004, p.82.

     So, are you already have peace with God? Are you having that kind of personal intimate relationship with Him? Are you in suffering because of your faithfulness that you are being enlisted in His Kingdom ministry? How ready you are to swim against the tide on all counts? 
Let's have a time to be still and give the Holy Spirit space to speak through the passage of scripture we have just read. Offer this time up to Jesus as you listen to him, while listening to "Gabriel's Oboe"

Spiritual Journal

     What I heard from Jesus today is: Are you ready to swim against the tide?

    What I got today from Jesus is a useful reminder that if we are serving Jesus in His Kingdom ministry, then we are going to experience quite a number of sufferings. It is just like what a good athlete is dreaming for, to enter into the most harsh training to get ready for the race.
     So, are you ready to enter into this kind of harsh training process? Are you ready to swim against the tide on all counts? 
Dear Lord Jesus, 

Lead us to understand that we cannot get rid of sufferings. Help us to be ready so that we can swim against the tide.   In Jesus name we pray. Amen.

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