Sep 15, 2009

Hopeful words of encouragement

by Eli Overbey

A new semester holds the chance for a new beginning. Each August, I go to Wal-Mart to buy folders, paper and other supplies, thinking that the coming year is going to be different from previous years. This year I am going to make good grades and be organized. This is going to be my year.

It is now a few weeks into the fall 2009 semester and my dreams of betterment are crushed, so I hope for the next semester.
Some view their spiritual lives similarly, thinking that this year is going to be different. This year, they will get involved at church, they will get help in their spiritual struggles and they will read the Bible and pray.

Some might actually make it, but quite a few will fail and put off doing better until the next year.

Coming off Spiritual Emphasis Week (SEW), many people feel euphoric. They feel ignited, ready to take on the world.

More than 300 people made a decision for Christ during SEW. It was a great time of renewal, focus and repentance. Men and women made decisions that changed their lives.

As a result of those decisions, people are joining ministries, signing up for mission trips, and trying to make this their year.

But what happens when the leaves begin to change, the weather becomes cold and life becomes challenging? What if the fire within starts to diminish? The once beautiful days become bleak and hard.

What do you do when all this energy and passion for Christ slowly begins to fade, and it becomes hard to drag yourself out of bed for an 11 a.m. church service?

All those promises you made seem unattainable.
In Matthew 5:3, Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

This is hope. Jesus just said, Happy are those who know they can’t do it. Happy are those who know their only plea is Christ. Happy are those who know that they are not sufficient, but that He is.

As this year goes on, and as life gets hard, remember that Christ is at work in you. He loves you no matter how messy you may be.

The reality is that the passions and emotion will fade, but the promise is that He will complete the work He started in you.

Happy are those who know they cannot, but that He can and will.

Contact Eli Overbey at

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