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Trusting God

by Tim Leahy

Life is filled with challenges which cause us to stress and worry about how these challenges will play themselves out.  In life we have the choice of working out these challenges on our own or to trust God.

Trusting God does not mean that we take no responsibility for dealing with the challenges of life, it means we do all that we can do and ought to do, and trust that God is in control and is going to work all things for our good and His glory (Romans 8:28; 1 Cor. 10:31; Matt. 5:16). It’s trusting that God has an incredible purpose and plan for our lives (Ephesians 1:1-12) and not stressing or worrying about how the challenges of life will play out.

Trusting God is what the Christian life is all about: trusting that God exists, that He’s good, that He loves us, that He cares for us, that He’s in control. Another way to explain trust is faith. In Hebrews 11 God reveals what faith is and provides 10 examples how those who were trusting Him lived by faith and what the results of their faith were.

God is Trustworthy because He is Faithful

In Hebrews 11:6 the Word of God says:  “without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

In Hebrews 1:1 the Word of God says: “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” In verse 2 God reveals that faith is what the 10 people that are mentioned in Hebrews 11:2-38 were commended for.

A great way to remember what Faith is, is its acrostic: Forsaking All I Trust Him.

What were those who were trusting God in the Old Testament hoping for, and what are we trusting in and hoping for?

Those who were trusting God in the Old Testament were trusting that He existed, that He’s good, that He loves us, that He cares for us, that He’s in control. Most importantly they were trusting His promise that He was going to send a Savior to fix their sin/separation problem. This promise is foretold throughout the Old Testament. One of the most famous references about the Messianic promise is known as the Abrahamic Covenant (Genesis 12:1-3).  In v. 3 God told Abraham that ‘all the peoples on the earth would be blessed through him.’

This promise was fulfilled by the first coming of Jesus who was a descendant of Abraham (Matthew 1:1-16). Jesus came to fix our sin and separation problem (Romans 3:23; Romans 6:23). Please click here  for complete details of how God fixed our sin and separation problem and what we all must do to live the life that God created us for.

[Click on blue words for addition information]

The Old Testament believers looked forward to the promised Savior (Jesus) and we are looking back at the fulfillment of that promise (Hebrew 11:13). But wait, there’s more. We (Old Testament & New Testament believers) are all waiting and looking forward to the second coming of Jesus (Hebrews 11:39-40; Matthew 24:1-3).

There is much written and believed about the second coming of Jesus and is something every follower of Jesus needs to know and share with those who don’t know Jesus. Regardless of what your end time beliefs (eschatology), both Old Testament and New Testament believers are waiting for the rapture  (1 Thessalonians 4:17) then Jesus’ return for His 1,000 year reign on earth (Revelation 20:1-6), followed by God’s eternal Kingdom (Revelation 20:7-15; Revelation 21:1-4).

In the meantime, whatever your challenge(s) may be, trust God and focus on His Kingdom, His glory, His purpose and plan, and your joy will overflow because of Him. Our circumstances/trials are temporary and they work for our good (Romans 8:28, 1 Peter 1:6-7; Romans 5:3-5; James 1:2-4) and His Glory. God is Trustworthy because He is Faithful.

If you want to learn more about God and His incredible love, purpose and plan for your life please click here.

 

Mulligan

Mulligan

by Tim Leahy

1/7/15

It’s a new year with new opportunities and new possibilities. During this time of year it’s natural to look forward with great expectations. It’s also natural and wise to look back to reflect on what went well (blessings) and what didn’t.  As the old saying goes – if we don’t learn from the past we’re likely to repeat the past.

The good news, correction, the great news is that no matter how bad you blew it in 2014, there’s an opportunity for a re-do. In the golf world this is known as a mulligan. If you’ve hit it in the woods, shanked it in water, or duffed it 2 inches you can re-hit it.

God is the God of second chances. God knew we would blow it. Knowing this He provided us with a re-do. This re-do has to do with our need to be forgiven and restored by God. This re-do can only take place when we realize that our sins have separated us from God and acknowledge that He has fixed our problem by sending His Son Jesus to die in our place.  Click here for full details.

Once we have received God’s Mulligan (Jesus) we (His Children – 1 John 1:12) are given more mulligans along the path of life. God knew that we would continue to blow it and hit it in the woods daily and be in need of do-overs. See Luke 11:15-32 to see an example of God’s re-dos.

God’s additional mulligan’s are received when we once again acknowledge that we blew it and confess it to God. God tells us in 1 John 1:9 that when we do this “… that He’s faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” Once we do this God restores us so we can get back on course to living the life He created us to live.

Unlike the mulligan in the game of golf, we still face the consequences for our actions. We are forgiven and restored, and responsible. To see this played out look at King David’s life  click here.

King David was a man after God’s heart (Acts 13:22) who badly miss hit the ball many times in his life. He confessed it, was forgiven and restored, but paid the price for his choices; both he, and his family. The great news is that God is the God of second chances who does not want any to perish, but everyone to come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9), and experience His love and forgiveness throughout our time on earth, then eternally when our journey on earth is done.

If you’ve never received God’s first Mulligan let me encourage you to do that (John 3:16) right now by trusting in Jesus’ death in your place for the forgiveness of your sins, and committing to live your life His way.

If you’ve received God’s first Mulligan and are using His additional mulligan’s to stay on course then tell others who are stuck in the sand traps and water hazards of life.

Click here  for resources to help you live the life God created us to live, and join us on Sunday nights at The Gathering to celebrate the God of second chances.