2 Corinthians 4:7-18 ESV -
7 But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.
8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair;
9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;
10 always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies.
11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.
12 So death is at work in us, but life in you.
13 Since we have the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, "I believed, and so I spoke," we also believe, and so we also speak,
14 knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence.
15 For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.
16 So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.
17 For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison,
18 as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
Perspective . . .
Do you feel pressure, grief, perplexed, etc.? You are not unique. In fact, Jesus said that in this world we would have tribulation (John 16:33); the apostle Paul wrote Timothy that all who want to live godly lives in Christ Jesus will be persecuted (2 Timothy 3:12).
However, this is not a morose or morbid woe is me attitude. Rather, it is realistic. However, note what Paul wrote to the Philippian believers that for him, to live is Christ, and to die is gain (Philippians 1).
And again, the perspective and the change — if I am to live “in Christ” (or keep in step with the Spirit) I must die to myself. It is no longer I who live but Christ lives in me . . .(Galatians 2). Paul is telling the Corinthians that his life is not about his agenda, or his wants and wishes — his life is serving God’s purpose for him.
This has become so real to me in the last few years. The thing about a progressive disease is that — it progresses . . .the goal posts continue to move. The objective is to slow the progression, but there is no going backwards to what life used to be . . . the “me” ten years ago had such a different idea of how life would look; even the “me” two years ago was quite different from now. Humility in part means to be teachable, and to be willing to admit that you don’t know everything. I had to learn how to really rest and be still. I had to learn how to not always multitask. I have had to learn to embrace God’s purpose for me, even though it is far different from what I expected. God does not need me to accomplish His purpose, but He graciously and generously uses this very broken clay pot 🙂
More tomorrow . . .
Pray for the Persecuted Church–OpenDoorsUSA
Day 6: The extremist ideologies sweeping across the
Sahel have brought widespread destruction. Pray that
the Lord would use these circumstances to display
Daily Wisdom Psalm 20, 50, 80, 110, 140 Proverbs 20