Sharing Changed Lives - Day 4

Opening Prayer:

Lord, help me consider my zeal for you as I read through this Scripture, amen.

Read: Romans 5:1-2 (NIV)

 “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God.”

 

Reflect:

Many years ago, we moved to a community so I could go to a university for graduate level studies.  As a result, my wife and I ended up attending a more liberal-oriented church with little emphasis on the Word.  It was the best we could do in the community we were in.  While we were there the church went through a “lay witness mission” that had a tremendous impact.  It went from a lethargic, dying church to one that was very much alive in the Lord.  It went from little emphasis on studying the Word to one with many small group Bible studies and these groups were busy evangelizing throughout the community. 

 Along with most of the membership, our faith moved from an intellectual faith to a heart-based faith.   The members wanted sermons that were focused on the Bible and its application.  The pastor of the church realized he was not capable of providing that kind of feeding and graciously moved on so that the congregation could bring in a pastor who would feed them a strong Biblical message and lead out in evangelism.

 I believe the Message best describes what happened to the congregation:

“By entering through faith into what God has always wanted to do for us—set us right with him, make us fit for him—we have it all together with God because of our Master Jesus. And that’s not all: We throw open our doors to God and discover at the same moment that he has already thrown open his door to us. We find ourselves standing where we always hoped we might stand—out in the wide-open spaces of God’s grace and glory, standing tall and shouting our praise.” (Romans 5:1-2 MSG)

 The change was evident to the community and the church began to thrive and grow.  When Christ changes us and takes control of our lives, we become more vibrant in our faith and we want to share it with others.

 

Apply:

Think about your faith-walk.  Has it become stagnate and dull?  If it has, think about what Christ has done in your life, read the Bible and pray for renewal in him.  Find some friends who have strong, vibrant faith and share with them.  As a result, you could experience Romans 5b, “We find ourselves standing where we always hoped we might stand—out in the wide-open spaces of God’s grace and glory, standing tall and shouting our praise.”

Closing Prayer:

God, bring people into my life with whom I can grow in a faith-building, faith sharing, vibrant witness.  In his name, amen.

Terry Schneider