As my youngest daughter (who is 4 years old) prays, she inevitably expresses thanks to God for the blessings that He provides. However, when she states it, there is a truth that she adds which many of us adults forget. She prays, “Thank you for the blessings that we always have.” It is true isn’t it? God “daily bears our burdens” (Psa. 68:19), and “A faithful man will be richly blessed” (Pro. 28:20). Even the unrighteous are blessed through God’s faithfulness in creation (Mat. 5:45; Acts 14:17). The physical blessings that every man enjoys come from God: “every good gift and every perfect gift is from above” (James 1:17). God wants us to be happy and satisfied so that we can see and access the greater blessings (that have always been in His mind) in the spiritual realm. To “always have” those blessings we must choose to be in Christ’s church and keep ourselves in the love of God (Mat. 16:18; Jude 21). To be “in Christ” one must have the faith that leads them to repent and confess Christ and be baptized “into” Him (John 3:36; Luke 13:3; Acts 8:37; Gal. 3:27). God had a plan before the world began for mankind to receive the ultimate blessings of mercy, grace, redemption, and eternal life in His Kingdom through obedience to His only begotten Son (2 Tim. 1:9; Titus 1:2). Think about it: Christ was “slain from the creation of the world” so we could always have blessings (Rev. 13:8). God chose that the faithful in Christ would always have blessings “before the creation of the world” (Eph. 1:4). At the end of time, the Lord and King will allow the righteous to always have blessings in the “kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world” (Mat. 25:34). Let us be thankful for the “blessings we always have!” Derrick Coble, Nesbit church of Christ, Nesbit, MS
Scripture of the Week
“The salvation of the righteous comes from the Lord; He is their stronghold in time of trouble.” — Psalm 37:39
Smile – God likes humor
POWER OF SCRIPTURE
The story has been told of a South Sea islander who proudly displayed the Bible to a G.I. during World War II. “We’ve outgrown that sort of thing,” the soldier said. The native smiled back and said, “It’s a good thing we haven’t. If it were not for this Book, you’d have been a meal by now!” – San Augustine church of Christ San Augustine, TX
Think About It
Do You Believe This?
“Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?’” (John 11:25-26)
When life is filled with good things and an easy life, keeping your faith poses little challenge; but when life is hard and painful, keeping of faith demands effort. We choose to believe in God and in Christ. The apostles and early evangelists proclaimed how Jesus fulfilled the Messianic prophecies and was raised from the dead. They suffered for their preaching, but they would not take back their solid testimony that Jesus was Lord and Christ (Acts 2:36).
We know the God who loves us, but we do not know what the future may bring. A fickle faith will not sustain us when the storms of life come crashing down. A fickle faith will not keep us strong and faithful to the truth, when others follow false religion. This is why we must continue to build our faith in God and in what He teaches.
If we do not believe what God says, we do not believe God. Jesus asked Martha if she believed what He promised. Martha confessed her faith, which included believing what He claimed about His coming into the world and life after death.
Because God gave us reasons to believe, we can confidently confess our faith in Christ. Because He arose from the dead, we can have confidence our sins are forgiven through His blood and we have a home with Him in eternity. ~~ Phil Sanders