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“The Secret of Joy” (2 Cor. 8:1-4)

God’s Good Plan for You (1 Thess. 5:9-10)

God’s Good Plan for You (1 Thess. 5:9-10)

 

WONDERFUL THING IN THIS PASSAGE – Do you sometimes wonder if the story of your life will have a happy ending? If you’re in a discouraging chapter right now, the answer may seem iffy. Especially if it’s a long chapter.

You may need to be reminded that God didn’t put you here to punish you:

“For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him” (1 Thess. 5:9-10).

The Lord has a much loftier vantage point than you do. He sees your whole story open before Him all at once. In fact, He wrote it all the way through: “Your eyes saw me when I was formless; all my days were written in Your book and planned before a single one of them began. God, how precious your thoughts are to me!” (Psalm 139:16-17). Every page is filled with His love for you.

He knew that there would be ups and downs. You mess up; others mess you up; and the world you walk around in is all messed up. But He has never doubted that it will all turn out well for you. Why? – Because He knows His unwavering intentions for you: “For I know the plans I have for you – this is the LORD’s declaration – plans for your well-being, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. You will call to me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you search for me with all your heart” (Jer. 29:11-13).

God spoke that to His chosen Israel; and if you’ll let Him, He’ll speak it to you.

As Paul assured the Thessalonians: You were appointed for salvation. Our Lord Jesus Christ died to make that salvation available. You trusted Christ and obtained that salvation. You will spend the rest of eternity living with Him.

WONDERFUL THING IN MY LIFE – It can’t get much better than that! As that reality sinks deeply into faith, the ups and downs of life seem less important. Even in challenging times, we can join Paul’s outbursts of joy and praise: “Blessed is the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavens in Christ! For he chose us in him, before the foundation of the world, to be holy and blameless in love before him.” (Eph. 1:3-4).

Our job is to live the kind of lives He chose us for: holy, blameless, in love, and before Him. He will help us at every step.

And by the way, the last page of the story of your life is not heaven. It’s quite the opposite. You’ll find that all your years on earth will be only a brief Forward to the book. Those few pages will be numbered with lower case Roman numerals – i, ii, iii, iv, etc.  Chapter One, Page 1 will be the day you enter heaven. And the book has no ending.

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