12th January 2020

Endurance > Ease

“…If we were joined with him in his death, then we are joined with him in his life! If we are joined with him in his sufferings, then we will reign together with him in his triumph. But if we disregard him, then he will also disregard us. But even if we are faithless, he will still be full of faith, for he never wavers in his faithfulness to us!”
2 Timothy 2:11-13 (TPT)

For the past couple of years, the instant pot has topped the list as the most sought-after gift and gotta-have gadget. It guarantees a fast and flavourful meal just by pressing a couple of buttons: set it and forget it! The promise of convenience and instant gratification with little effort is quickly permeating our culture. With smartphones, search engines, and artificial intelligence recommendations we are used to getting what we want in a quick and easy manner. This idea may seem like a no-brainer. Research, however, is beginning to show that our instant gratification culture is starting to rewire our brains and undermine essential structures of everyday life. The dependence on convenience and personal preferences is contributing to weakened empathy, heightened anxiety and a struggle to make lasting commitments. There is concern that although technology virtually connects us to millions of other people, we are becoming a lonely society longing for more meaningful connections.

The apostle Paul understood the longing for connection and ease in life. While imprisoned in a dungeon, he wrote 2 Timothy, filled with concern for his fellow believers who were experiencing persecution. His advice is not to find the easiest solution or escape from hardship, but to endure. Paul knows that God does not work within our timeframes or processes; but is always working for our good. He charges Timothy to place his hope in Jesus and to persevere. Paul finds comfort in Christ’s character, and encourages Timothy (see above). Paul knows that our God is faithful, constant, and reliable. Our God, who is the very definition of love, is relentlessly initiating and sustaining relationship with us; even when we are looking for a quick and easy way to satisfy our desires. He poured out his love through the Holy Sprit giving us the power to press through. We can endure difficult times, knowing that perseverance produces character, and character, hope!

When you enter a difficult season, don’t panic and look for the easiest way out. Ask him to lead you forward, and take heart that joined with Jesus in his death and suffering, we are also resurrected with him into new life!

Prayer
Merciful Father, life can be hard for everyone at times. That is when we need to realise the gift of quiet endurance will see us through, if we rely on you. In Jesus’ name we pray.
Amen

Study presented by Greg Williams

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About the Presenter:
The Day by Day each Sunday is taken from ‘Speaking of Life,’ (https://www.gci.org/videos/media-speaking-of-life/), a public resource video on the USA website of Grace Communion International. Greg Williams is President of Grace Communion International and lives in North Carolina, USA.

Local Congregation:
You are welcome to attend one of our local Church congregations located throughout the UK and Ireland. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.gracecom.church under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Contact:
Email: admin@daybyday.org.uk

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