06.2 John – Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus

When someone becomes a Christian, they immediately are filled with living water and they never thirst again.  Everything from that point forward is just wonderful and joyous and divine.  Right?

For most of us that is not the reality that we witness, nor is it what Jesus is promising.  He does not promise a mountaintop life, with only highs and no lows, with no work and only play.  Instead, He calls us to be workers in the field, to get our hands dirty, to sweat and toil for the kingdom of God.

But he also promises that joy will always be accessible to us and that His power and Spirit are always with us.  There will be times of hardship and sadness.  One does not need to look far to see how Jesus Himself was persecuted as were all of His followers.  But the solution is not to be found in looking downward, in focusing on the problems, but instead in looking up.

Too often we let our focus drift to the challenges and problems of the world.  We live in a broken world, with broken leaders and systems and ideas.  The things of the world are not the things of God.

I listened to a pastor this week admonish Christians to be aware of their focus and words.  When our attention is too drawn to politics and world problems, we portray to others a sense of worry and of dread.  The call is not to ignore these things, but to communicate that there is a solution and His name is Jesus Christ.

My Answers:

3.
a.
to do the will of Him who sent me and to finish His work.  The gathering of believers brought spiritual nourishment.  Fed by bringing glory to God

b.
The highlight of my weeks are the time I get to spend telling the story of God’s word to kids.  I also enjoy writing about it and find myself more filled up than poured out from doing it.  I gain more by the act.

c.
Start by relying on Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit.  By changing their focus in life from the troubles around them to the glory of God (2 Cor 3:18) and act as one who is blessed by God (Phil 5:5-8

4.
a.
I often seek my way first and turn to God when it fails.  I too often want the easy path instead of wanting God to challenge and work me so that I will grow.

b.
Care for others, needy, widows, orphans; prayer; fasting; storing up riches in heaven; bibles study, memorization of verses; not worrying (trusting in God instead); making disciples; going to where others need to hear about Jesus; Testifying to the good news of God’s grace; finishing the race

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