Peace and Growth
It’s Spring Break for my students at Southern Bible and they were ready for a break. Professor Ford even had them listen to a message from Rick Warren on the need to take a break and release some of that tension. Well, Mary and I are putting that lesson into action. We are up in Connecticut taking a break with half of our kids and grandkids.
Even the first century church needed a stress release and with the conversion of Saul, getting him safely out of Jerusalem and back to Tarsus, Luke tells us that the Lord gave the churches throughout Judea, Galilee, and Samaria a break. He relieved the pressure from persecution and the encouraging power of the Holy Spirit generated a time of great growth in the early church.
“Now the church throughout all of Judea, Galilee, and Samaria had peace. It was being built up, walking in reverence for the Lord, and the encouraging ministry of the Holy Spirit was multiplying their numbers.” Acts 9:31
I remember the stock market crash in September of 2008. It was not only a tough financially for our country but for the church where Mary and I were serving. Tension, stress, and demands for change---it was not a peaceful time. But nine and half years later as I spoke at New Covenant Church and saw the Spirit of God touching especially the men, I experienced peace.
Both in our church life and our personal lives there will be times of intense stress, but praise the Lord, there will also be times of peace and growth.
LORD, thanks that the same Holy Spirit who encouraged, strengthened, and caused the church to grow in the early chapters of Acts is still present to give me peace this week. Continue to use Truth Encounter to multiply those who respond positively to the truth about Jesus.
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