growth in the hard places

Yes, “we believe…” But how much do we really believe? We might respond, “100% in my mind, I believe by faith in God’s word.” That might be a good start, depending, but not good enough.

We need to thoroughly embrace God’s word, and God’s promises for ourselves in Jesus. And more times than not, we need to do so in the crucible of hard life experiences in which we are cast on God’s mercy, and really dependent on his word.

Faith eventually means rest, but it also means effort, as a rule: effort to get into that rest.

Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience.

Hebrews 4:11

And that effort can mean nothing less than spiritual warfare (Ephesians 6:10-20). We need to remain in the word, in scripture, depending on the Spirit and the church (which includes the sacramental, as well as the common life), our faith being in Jesus and in the gospel.

God not only wants to make his will known to us, but he wants to enable us to walk/live in that will in and through his mercy and grace to us in Jesus. But make no mistake: this will require every effort on our part. And the trials that come, as we read in scripture can help us in the midst of a rock and hard place to really at long last find our way into the rest God has for us, for all, in and through Jesus.


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