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Let us not become weary in doing
good, for at the proper time we will
reap a harvest if we do not give up.
(Galations 6:9)

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Entries in God Says (23)


God Says..."Cast all your cares on me."

By Jason V (Ponderings of a Pilgrim Pastor)

"Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you." (1 Peter 5:7)

As a husband, father and pastor, I face the constant temptation to worry.  At our church, with our church members and leaders, in our home, in my marriage- everywhere I face almost constant fears and anxieties.

I am tempted to worry about my children: Will they grow up to love the Lord?  Will they fall into trials and temptations that seem to plague so many “pastor’s kids”?  Have I messed up in my parenting? Am I too restrictive? Am I too permissive?

I am tempted to worry about our marriage and our household: Will we have enough money to pay for all of life’s expenses? Am I spending enough time with my wife?  Am I showing her how much I love her?  Is she feeling pressured and overwhelmed by the task of being a “pastor’s wife”?  Am I praying for her as much as I should?

At church, I am tempted to anxiety at every turn: Did the visitors like our church?  Was my sermon really any good?  Will our church grow?  Will giving increase?  Will we meet our budget?  Are our people really growing spiritually?  Are we reaching our community?  Should we be doing more?  How can we?

If I tried to carry the weight of all of these concerns and expectations, they would crush me.  Honestly, on some days, I carry too much and I do feel overwhelmed.  So what am I supposed to do?

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God Says... "It's all about..."

By Nick (My Experience As...)

I have a student that hasn’t been attending Sunday services very regularly lately. She is really solid in the Youth, and used to be really solid on Sundays. Most of the time she has some kind of excuse, he brother was sick and wanted her to stay home, her dad didn’t want to get up to take her, she had a school event, she had homework … Lot’s of excuses.

Recently I asked her why she was flaking so much on Sundays. She started to give me the list of excuses and I asked her to step back. There have been times she came with much more solid excuses. On Wednesdays I’ve seen her come and do her homework before and after service. I’ve even heard her comment that she had homework, but would get it done before school because she didn’t want to miss church. She has called for rides when her dad didn’t want to take her and I know she has left her sick brother to fend for himself … if she wanted to do something else. So the excuses are just something to get between her and the real reasons.

Once we got through that she told me the truth. She said she loved coming to Youth and got a lot out of it, but on Sundays, it just doesn’t make her feel the same. She doesn’t feel God, doesn’t get anything, doesn’t feel like the effort is worth it.

I have to admit, I get that. I spend my Sunday in the sound booth try to keep the old, twice fried by lightening system running without a hitch. I’ve been able to find pretty much every buzz, bad channel, and anything else causing problems. Things are working great, but I struggle to get into worship. I find myself distracted and rarely get anything out of the service. That’s a pretty rough place to be, and I totally get how this young lady feels.

Then I put a question to her. “Why do we have church?”

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God Says... "I will meet your need."

 By Dusty (Reflections on the Life of a Christian)

We want and ask for the moon. We want perfect families, great jobs, fancy houses, sweet cars, and so much more. We want to go through life problem free, never encountering trials or hardships.

We want. We want. We want.

But what we want is not necessarily what we need. And should we have those things we 'wanted', often we find the happiness associated with them is short lived and quickly replaced with more wants.

Unfortunately some never learn that lesson and spend their entire lives chasing after their earthly material desires. They go from one dream to the next constantly seeking that will satisfy their want and fill their life with joy.

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God Says... "I will come near to you."

By Kely Braswell (Dangerous Breeze)

Far away, so close...

So, all my preacher friends tell me that God is everywhere. And I pretty much believe that.

But what about when it don't feel like it?!

What about when things ain't exactly goin' swimmingly, and the ends don't meet at the end of the month, and the people you love are sick of you, and it's been four days since I read any Psalms and I haven't even remembered the really weak prayers like "Oh, God, please bless my mashed potatoes, and make 'em really creamy?"

What about then?

What about when I'm standing in a wide expanse of nothingness, and I'm yellin', "God. Where ARE you?"

"Well, God's close. As close as your skin."

That's what people will say, those who know the proper theological, churchy, St. Francis and the Pope type answers to these things.

But does it matter if He's close, even if I don't feel Him? 'Cause sometimes "close" sure seems "far."

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God Says... "It will be worth it."

By Jason S (Connecting to Impact)

We all have situations in our lives that bring up the question of cost vs. worth.  Nearly every day, there are big concerns and little ones; ones we weigh carefully and others we decide in split seconds.  We don't want to be caught spinning our tires or wasting our time.

Sometimes we decide we've paid enough and walk away, but when we are walking away from something God spoke to us or led us into, we are guaranteed to miss out on something wonderful.

I like how the Amplified version puts Romans 8:28:

"We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose."

God gives us a part in all this. We aren't simply waiting around, but He partners with our labor in this work of restoration. That's restoration for ourselves and those around us.

We may be ready to bail, saying, "it's not worth it." Meanwhile, God is trying to get our attention to reassure us and tell us, "Just hold on. I know you can't see it now, but it will be worth it."

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