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Joy through Suffering

This is one of my favorite sermons ever.

It’s from last year’s TGC conference, and I’ve listened to it multiple times since then.

Check it out.

 

God, give me faith

Remembering rightly redeems our rejoicing.

God, give me faith

Don’t forget that I am faithful to myself (p.s. side note by me..check out 2 Timothy 2:13) and I have acted on your behalf…And I’m not doing this because you’re awesome. Because that’s where we like to land…Nobody’s going to say it, but a lot of us believe it. We believe that it’s going to work well because we’re faithful. We believe that it’s going to work well because we do it “this way.”…And the message that God’s had for His people since day 1 is: I’m going to do this because I’m awesome. I’m going to do this because I’m spectacular. In fact, let me show you how spectacular I am: I’m using you, dummy…The fact that I’m doing this isn’t as spectacular as the fact that I’m letting you play. Don’t forget.

God, give me faith

Paul loved to preach the gospel not only in a frontier setting. He did that, but he also preached it to who?  Christians! Nobody wants the ministry of Moses. Being in the desert with complaining people, then dying before they get in. Everybody wants Pauline theology, but nobody wants Pauline pain.

God, give me faith

Do not assume the gospel. It has to be explicit, constantly explicit. Remember moralistic therapeutic deism—do this, don’t do that, go here, don’t go there. Don’t assume it. If we teach kids merely not to do things, we don’t end up with Christians—we end up with nerdy lost kids.

God, give me faith

When you hear cancer, you experience loss, the redeemed are quick to rejoice in Christ. This is different than rejoicing in youth, your wife, your children. All of that can be taken from you. But Jesus cannot be taken from you. That is our hope and rejoicing.

God, give me faith

God, give me faith

God’s grace in my life:

By His grace, I haven’t experienced much suffering at all.

By His grace, I will be given strength to press on when suffering inevitably comes.

By His grace, I will remember my God at all times.

By His grace, everything in this world can be taken from me and make me realize my need for Him.

By His grace, nothing can separate me from the love of Christ.

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