We lose faith when we become preoccupied with our performance. When we begin to measure our faith by our “perfect moral record”, belief leaves our hearts. Burned out by the exhaustion of our human efforts, we will soon leave the church, and in time, leave God as well.
Somehow, several spiritually shrewd and inspiring Christians convinced me to stop feeling frustrated and to start learning, so I began to ask a lot of questions. One of these questions started a life-altering conversation with my conference roommate. I told him I was having difficulty with my Quiet Times – the early morning period of reflection between God and me.
Faith is hard because when we believe, we enter the spiritual world where the most consequential battles are fought. Progress here is even more difficult than progress in the physical world.
The degree to which we are willing to let our emotions control us will determine our capacity to trust God. Simply put, trusting our emotions over God and his Word will lead us into a state of unbelief.
We need to learn what we need to do to become a calming rather than contentious influence, so that the John 17:20-23 prayer of Jesus’ can become a reality in our lives.
Jesus was cagey and colorful all the time. We seriously need to evaluate how we see Jesus!
When an individual can “hold the attention of someone by being extremely interesting, exciting, charming, or attractive,” then that person is captivating. This brings us to a question. How captivating was Jesus?
Jesus’s confidence was in God, so when people were fickle he remained faithful, which is why I think so many people found him attractive. We must read the scriptures with greater intensity to learn this confidence, so we continue to keep the dream of Jesus alive and build his kingdom, regardless of whether we are many or few, important or irrelevant, succeeding or failing, being criticized or praised.
“Deep Purpose” is the theme for the day, and since we studied “Deep Destiny” yesterday, it will be important to differentiate between the two. For our purposes, “Destiny” is the ultimate goal of your life, while “Purpose” is the path you will take and things you will do to get there.
“Deep Thinking” is what will make it possible for us to explain our faith to a confused or curious world in an inspiring way.
The goal for today is to prepare your heart and mind to let go, whoever it is against, whatever was done, and wherever it happened.