Advent Week 4 – Thursday – Grace Is Not Opposed to Effort

Thursday, Week 4
Grace Is Not Opposed to Effort

Scripture Reading
Romans 16:25-27

Romans 16:25 – 27, New English Bible
“To him who has power to make your standing sure (to the One who is strong enough to make you strong, The Message) according to the Gospel I brought you and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of that divine secret kept in silence for long ages but now disclosed and made know to all the nations (to all the gentiles, The New Testament in Modern English) to bring them to faith and obedience (leading to obedience of faith, New American Standard) to God who alone is wise, through Jesus Christ be glory for the endless ages.  Amen.”

We are to rely on God for strength, for God to make us strong.  Strength comes in many shapes and sizes.  Physical strength is only one aspect.  Training to be physically strong takes time, effort, dedication, resources and patience; many people in our world pursue it diligently.  Being fit and strong is being a good steward of the body God has given us.

Training to be spiritually strong and fit, as we are admonished by Paul in 1 Corinthians 9:24 is even more important than physical strength and fitness.  Are we dedicating the same resources of time, effort, dedication to growing more spiritually fit and strong?  Are we constantly and consistently working toward spiritual formation and growth?  Are we training (working toward the goal) or are we only “trying”?  Training implies ongoing effort, an organized approach to improvement with a specific goal(s) in mind.

The Message says God “is strong enough to make us strong”, but we must do our part.  We must “train” and we must submit to His process. 

JoAnn Cobble

Jesus invites people into his life and his way. He takes what is and points to the new way of the Kingdom of God.  Come see what this journey is all about!

One way to think about the mission of Jesus - He calls into question the way things are and points to the way things may be in the Kingdom of God. 

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