In Community – In Christ

My original title was “Hospitals, Walnuts, Testimonies and Dogs” as that seemed to sum up my week. But I decided that it was too self-focused.  In taking every thought captive for Christ, I have to train myself and allow the Holy Spirit to direct me to Jesus and others – not to be so self-focused.  It can difficult for an introvert!

I wanted to share with you where Jesus met with me this week.  And I hope you’ll share with others in your life where Jesus met with you.  We must encourage one another in Christ.

So, due to a gall bladder attack my father spent some time in ICU at two different hospitals where they discovered he has a heart condition.  Due to his heart condition, my family and I decided to give him a hand with some yard work – which included picking up hundreds of walnuts.  It was snowing by the time we decided to stop working.  Little Bit says she never wants to see another walnut again!  The day after dad was released to go home, I gave my testimony to a group of women from my church.  And two days later, while hiking I was charged by two different dogs – one unfriendly to the end (as I walked away, watching him over my shoulder as he followed me barking all the way) and one who ended up licking my face (can you guess which one was the Labrador?).  In each situation the peace of Christ filled my spirit.  I have to tell you that none of these situations was what I’d consider fun.  Each of them should have been trying in their own way.  But Jesus answered our prayers, strengthened our resolve, lifted our spirits, put His words in my mouth, gave us His joy and peace, and blessed me in each moment.

I praise God that although my circumstances were not what I would have desired, that He did a mighty work in each of them.  After giving my testimony, one woman there shared with me how her testimony was similar to mine.  So many times what God has allowed in our lives, He’s also allowed in someone else’s life and He intends for our trials and victories to be an encouragement to others.  We must share our lives and testimonies with those around us – giving glory to God in heaven for all that He is doing.  This is how we are to live in community with other believers and how we are to be witness to those who don’t know Jesus yet.

So share your journey.  Give God the glory.  Be encouraged.  Press on.

Tychicus will tell you all about my activities. He is a beloved brother and faithful minister and fellow servant in the Lord. I have sent him to you for this very purpose, that you may know how we are and that he may encourage your hearts, and with him Onesimus, our faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you. They will tell you of everything that has taken place here. Colossians 4:7-9

Colossians 4.9

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