Thursday, October 02, 2008

Staying power

Today’s Reading: John 16:14-15 (NIV)

14 [Jesus said,] “He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. 15 All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.

Good morning!

I sat in class last night, holding that long-awaited syllabus in my hand. I was tired, having spent long hours reading and writing in preparation for this first class discussion. And I’ll confess I was little bit nervous. I wondered if I had the staying power to remain fully focused and committed to the work outlined on the printed pages before me.

I’ve been looking forward to this particular cluster with great anticipation. I recognize that this is the course curriculum that will frame the next steps of my education. It is thirteen weeks of intensive reading and writing. I’ve asked the Father for an extra measure of His wisdom and understanding; to discern and recognize Truth through the power of His Word. I know that if I glean even half of what I learn in this class room, I will graduate from Lindenwood University a much wiser person than I was when I enrolled three years ago as a full-time student. We will be studying the Old and New Testaments in their entirety, and read and discuss the published works of many great philosophers in history. The professor who teaches these classes in the day program recognizes the enormous amount of time and commitment it will take for evening students, who work full-time day jobs and have families and church work and other commitments, to complete this course curriculum in one short quarter. I think he wondered whether the students might take one look at his syllabus, stand up, and run out of the room in a sheer panic, yet everyone stayed!

I am convinced that this passage of Scripture that I’ve shared with you today was written especially for me. At Faith Church, we’ve been learning what extravagant generosity means, not just in theory, but in practice. There is a lot of disconcerting stuff happening right now. People are nervous about their financial futures, the world economy, and, of course, the upcoming US Presidential elections. Folks are struggling to find money to pay for necessities, like food, utilities, gasoline and mortgage payments. Especially in times of need, I realize all that I am and everything I have is a treasured gift from the Father. The resources I hold do not belong to me; they never have, nor will they ever be. If there is anything good in my life at all, it is because of the Lord. If I have anything to offer back by way of service to others, it is because God gave it first. His mercies are new each day, and I am completely and totally captivated by His never-ending love. Jesus said that all that belongs to the Father is His, and He willingly gives it to each of us through the power of the Holy Spirit. What an amazing gift, to experience His presence in such a powerful way each day! Jesus Christ has given you and me an awesome opportunity to exercise staying power, especially when times are tough. He allows us to press in and draw from His power and strength through His Holy Word; and it is His Word that will stand the test of time.

Come and experience true staying power in Jesus Christ today. He will give you just what you need when you need it the most. It is His free and unconditional gift to all who will choose to make Him Lord of their life. Feeling a little overwhelmed today? Christ will give you His staying power through the power of the Holy Spirit. All you have to do is ask.

Grace and peace,

Deb Spaulding

Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO


© Copyright 2008, Deb Spaulding

All rights reserved

Articles may not be printed in any “for profit” publication without further permission by the author. Articles may be freely distributed via e-mail, reprinted in church bulletins or in other non-profit publications without further permission. Please keep this copyright and Web Site information intact with copied articles. Articles are sent originally to subscribers only. You may have received a forwarded or reprinted copy.

No comments: