Good Morning Everyone,
Our theme for this month: “Pushing through adversity”
Our Bible verse for today: “I hate, I despise your religious festivals; your assemblies are a stench to me. Even though you bring me burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them. Though you bring choice fellowship offerings, I will have no regard for them. Away with the noise of your songs! I will not listen to the music of your harps. But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-ending stream!” Amos 5:21-24 (NIV)
Our thought for today: “The first step to dealing with adversity is to make sure you are right with God.”
The words of Amos in today’s Scripture probably sound harsh and they probably also sound familiar. We’ve heard essentially the same message from Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Jesus. In each case the people of God thought they were doing well by worldly standards, but their religious observances were empty ritual and God was tired of it.
In each of situations highlighted by the different prophets the people were on the cusp of entering into a time of great suffering and adversity and it would be their own fault. Their number one problem was that they were out of fellowship with God. Even though they went through the motions of religious observances, it was phony religion and it was all meaningless in God’s eyes.
Their real problem (the problem from which all of their other problems would flow), was that they were out of fellowship with God. They were not walking the talk; they were not living what they professed to believe; it was all a religious show and therefore they did not have a firm spiritual foundation from which to deal with all the other issues of life.
That’s often true for us too. The root problem for much of the adversity we find ourselves facing is that we are out of true fellowship with God. That then leads to all sorts of other problems. Therefore the answer for us is the same as it was for them – we need to get right with God. Once we have our relationship with God right, then we will be ready to address whatever else it is that we’re dealing with.
I encourage you to attend worship services this Sunday, but do so with a heart that is truly seeking an encounter with God. Be prepared to offer Him genuine worship and then ask Him for the insight and wisdom needed to deal with whatever other situations you have going on.
Often the first step to dealing with adversity is to make sure you are right with God.