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"Give thanks in everything"

Summary of sermon by Friedel Stegen, 03 February 2013

 

There's the story of a lizard who saw a cat and was paralysed with fear. It just gazed at the cat and could not move even though there was a hole to escape into. The little girl whose cat it was noticed it, felt pity for the lizard and took the cat away. For a long time the lizard simply lay there as dead, not realising that the cat has been taken away. Only after a long while did the lizard get up and hide away in its hole, without its tail.

We behave in the same way, many a time. Our eyes are fixed on the sin in us and when temptation comes we just see our sin and so our eyes are fixed on it and we cannot overcome, even though Jesus has already set us free and taken the "cat" away. He has conquered sin on Calvary. Everything necessary for full salvation has already been paid for. And yet, we so often are found gazing at the enemy or ourselves instead fixing our eyes on Jesus.

Rom 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Job was a godly man. God challenged satan with his life. We know what happened to Job and how satan caused him to lose his wealth, his family and even his health. But his end was wonderful and better than his beginning when God purified him. His life shows that everything works together for the good of those that love Him. God uses different ways so that we are conformed into the image of His Son. He can, as shown in the story of Job, even use the devil.

He can even use sickness. Some people when they get sick don't ask God why and do not seek His face. But we should ask Him because everything works together for the good of those who love Him. When we realise the sickness comes from God and learn what God wants to teach us through it then it works for our good. Yes, it might be the devil but God uses even him to reach His purposes.

With Job it was the case. God allowed the devil to do everything to Job but God knew Job would stand fast and overcome and be drawn closer to Him.

When people misunderstand you, do you realise that God is busy moulding you into the image of Christ? Then you won't have time to think of the person who misunderstood you for you are busy with Christ that He changes you into His image. Everything comes from God, and He allows these things to happen to you because He loves you.

He admonishes you, purifies you and moulds you into His image.

When your parents punish you, may you not see your father or mother punishing you but that the Lord Jesus is moulding you into His image. Then you will also love your parents more for their correction.

One could easily, when you meet up with an accident, accuse the person who did wrong instead of seeing God in it. No matter what happens to you accept it out of the hand of God. Then you will never be disappointed for you accept everything out of His hand, for you know He is busy moulding you into His image. Then you can never have a grudge against the next person, because everything that happens to you is for your good and is under God's control.

It's so easy to point to people when things go wrong instead of acknowledging that God allowed it for your good.

When God brings things in your life which upsets you thank Him for revealing it so that you can deal with it in your life.

When they dealt harshly with the Lord Jesus, whipped Him, spoke evil of Him and even crucified and killed Him, He had no grudges but simply gave it to God as coming from His hand and forgave them, "Father forgive them for they know not what they do".

What do people see in me and you? Do they see that Christ is the first? Do my children see Christ is the first in my life? Do my parents see Jesus is the first in my life?

God is busy working day and night to mould you into His image. Don't resist Him but allow Him to do His wonderful work.

When someone reprimands you, may you accept it out if His hand. Recognise that Jesus is reprimanding you so that you are transformed into His image.

Eph 5:20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;

How is this possible? How can one give thanks for sickness, the hail storm destroying your crop, hardships, losing your wife, husband or your children going into the world? How can one be thankful for that? That's impossible you might say. Until your eyes are opened to see God is busy moulding you into His image through it all. He is even busy working in seeming disasters if He is first in your life and you love Him. He is busy moulding you that you might be formed into the image of His dear Son, Jesus Christ.

May we submit to His will that He attains His purpose with us. May we not be a hindrance to His working, but work together with Him. May we allow Him to work in our lives and not resist Him.

If you do this, then you will be different to other people who resist God's working in them. Then you will be Christ-like!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Last edited on: Monday February 04, 2013     E-mail us at: mail@ksb.org.za          Return to KSB Home page