Be strong in the Lord

Good morning everyone,
Our theme for this month: “The end of anxiety and despair”
Our Bible verse for today: “But be alert at all times, praying that you may have strength …” Luke 21:36 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Be strong in the Lord”
In recent days we’ve been considering the example of the camel. We’ve learned that the camel is an amazingly resilient animal that has deep reserves to draw upon which enable it to persevere in the worst of conditions for long periods of time. We’ve also learned that we need to be like the camel in that we need to have deep reserves we can draw on, and we need to keep those reserves adequately replenished.
But how do we do that? This is important. Simply stating that we should do something is helpful to a degree, but we need to know how to do it if it’s really going to make any difference in our lives.
The answer is that we must have a deeper strength to draw on than our own. Our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual reserves have to be regularly replenished by the Lord. In Luke 21:36 Jesus instructed us to pray for strength. The Greek word used there means “to be strong to another’s detriment; to prevail against; to be superior in strength; to overcome; to prevail.”
That’s the kind of strength Jesus tells us we need and should want and should ask for. It’s a combative strength that implies a battle must be fought and we will need help to win it. So, we are instructed to pray for such strength. In other words, we don’t have it and therefore it’s necessary that we ask for it, and then it will be given to us.
The fact is that life is combat. It’s spiritual warfare (Ephesians 6:10-18). We have a spiritual enemy (Satan), and he brings the battle to us every day. This is where much of our anxiety and despair comes from. Jesus instructs us to pray for combative strength and then to fight the enemy. This is you being proactive. This is you refusing to be defined by or defeated by anxiety and despair. This is you praying for strength and then fighting for yourself.  
How does God impart that strength to us? Go back to our example from yesterday from Psalm 42. God’s blessings of renewal are like the mighty waters of a great waterfall just washing over us. But we have to place ourselves in the flow. We have to place ourselves in a position before God every day whereby He can renew us, replenish us, and impart His strength to us. We must have a deeper source of strength than just our own.
This is important and we’re not done considering it, so we’ll come back to this again tomorrow.
God bless,
Pastor Jim
Copyright © 2022 Oak Hill Baptist Church, All rights reserved.

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