Strength for the Day

Jay Pankratz

“So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.” – Colossians 2:6-7

An attractive young couple answered the door and invited me into their beautifully kept home. All the latest games and gadgets were on display as their two children quietly played. They seemed to have it all—until they tearfully described their nightmare relationship and plans to divorce. “Is there any hope?” they asked. Only if you start growing in Christ,” I responded. They were both Christians too busy making money and going to games to have serious time for God and church. That day they made a commitment to grow in Christ, be in church and begin the spiritual growth process. It worked. Several months later they were faithfully coming to church holding hands with new found love and joy. But it didn’t last. Six months later I sporadically saw them in church. They told me, “Things are going so well, we don’t need to be in church studying the Bible so much.” Then they stopped completely. A year after that they split up and were fighting over the division of their toys and credit card debts.

Life is tough. You are going to face some hard challenges and temptations this week. How are you going to stay strong and finish well? You say, “I received Christ and His power goes with me.” That’s a great start. But it’s not enough to stay strong. You must “continue to live in him” and grow in Christ daily. If you receive Christ and then mostly ignore spiritual growth you may go to heaven, but you will have all the messes and stresses of the ungodly on this earth. Will you take the next step in the spiritual growth process? Are you going to read your Bible today? And tomorrow? Will you devote significant time to pray? What about going to church and a small group this week? What will you do about that pesky “overflowing with thankfulness” today? What step will you take to continue in Christ and finish strong?

If my output exceeds my intake, my upkeep becomes my downfall.

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