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Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Turmoil & Love of the Brethren

There are so many things going on in the world that are stressful. 
Earthquakes, tornadoes, unrest between people, drought, persecution, and apostasy.
Conflicts without and fears within. 
If you are Christ's and you are depressed, God is the Comforter of the depressed.  If we are suffering, God will never forsake us as His children.   It's easy to despair if we forget God is working the best for us and that Heaven will be more joyous for those who have been purified and perfected by trials.
Sometimes conflicts come from other brothers and sisters in Christ.  Sometimes confrontation is necessary when there is sin and error, but other times we wound each other forgetting that we are all in a process of sanctification.  While we must not compromise Biblical doctrine and false teachers must be called out (especially by church leaders), we can't forget that there are true Christians who are at different levels of spiritual growth.   It may be hard for us to remember Galatians 6:1 even in the times when someone does sin.   We hurt the reputation of Christ in the world bickering about eschatology, Theonomy, etc.  It isn't that those things aren't important, and individual churches should have people willing to be united in their teaching to prevent factions. 
The internet is another world, but even at that - all true Christians should be united on the essentials of the Gospel. 
Sadly, many people do not know what the essentials are and are tossed to and fro, while others act like things are essential that aren't. 
People are sinners, and Christians are sinners that have been forgiven by God and in need of patience and grace from God and by other Christians.  I struggle with and strive to forgive other believers.  Christ has forgiven me, and while I may feel I have much knowledge - I still wonder at God not giving up on me with all my sinfulness.  I have a long ways to go in the process of being conformed to Christ's image in my character and in my thoughts.
How much do I love enemies?  Sometimes we treat other Christians as enemies when we shouldn't. 
Recently I was reminded to pray for enemies, and it helped me in my conversations on Twitter with those who call themselves "atheists."  You actually begin to care about those you pray for.
As Christians, did we always know as much as we know now, and in twenty years will we look back and have no mercy on our old selves?
Knowledge can puff up, but love edifies. 
One may say they have love, but they lack knowledge.  Another may have all doctrine right, but if they don't live it and love others they will separate themselves and fall into disobedience.
Recently, I was able to do some hobby things when my hands were feeling up to it.
I did some bead hat bands and this painting.  I decided to share the painting with those who look at my blog.

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