Sometimes, it may seem there is not much to be thankful for or encouraged about. Looking at all that is going on around us can be discouraging. Times of trouble are often what it takes to prompt us to look to Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith. A conversation with a friend reminded me of the value of knowing Scripture and the ways of God. Throughout history God has used troubling times to get people’s attention. Many turn to the Lord during times of suffering, problems and difficulties. It could be that these are the times for us to soar to greater heights of usefulness to God. One of my long distance mentors use to say that our problems, suffering and troubling times can be opportunities to “focus our faith, fashion our character, and fit us for service.”
Power of Conversations
It was encouraging to reconnect with a friend recently that I first met more than 40 years ago. Bill was a professor at a Christian college and a very religious person. However, he had not come to a personal relationship with Jesus. Through some ongoing witnessing and engaging conversations, he came to the Lord. As a result, he began sharing his faith and several family members and friends came to the Lord. He later became a pastor, as well as a business as mission practitioner. Much fruit has come from Bill’s life and ministry over the past four decades.
Work of the Spirit
The lasting impact of transformed lives is ultimately the work of the Holy Spirit, not our plans or human effort. We are often amazed and surprised at the spontaneous work of the Spirit when we obey Him and reach out with the love and message of Jesus. Strategies, plans and methods are valuable and needed. However, when we walk with God, obey His leading, and act in faith, we can expect His redemptive activity of multiplying disciples. Communicating the Good News of Jesus and making disciples is sometimes more fruitful during hard times.
Fruit that Multiplies and Reproduces
As followers of Jesus, it is important to recognize the power of sowing God’s truth into the lives of those we have contact with on a regular basis. It could be a shopping mall, a trade show, a convention center or just a walk in the neighborhood where we encounter those who need the Lord. Ultimately, it’s Christ Himself, living in us, who produces fruit that remains and reproduces. As we faithfully share the good seed of the Word of God, we can expect it to connect with fertile soil.
Click here to read more.
SOURCE: Assist News Service