By T. Adrienne Terrell
Greetings from The Springs! You know how in school when the teacher gives you homework it seems to make you depressed? Well, Pastor T gave us homework and we view it as a challenge. We all want to pass the test! Don’t worry. I will have mine completed. Will you?
I have another question for you. Do you remember the popular game show Match Game PM? I believe it was hosted by Gene Raburn and it was a big hit. Well on Saturday evening our Couples’ Ministry played the Springs’ version and it was better than the television show ever could be.
The winners for the two matches played were Bobby Harden and Adrienne Slappy. It was great to have so many young couples, which added greatly to the lively meting.
The choir belted out a meal on Sunday. Okay I will explain. There was something about the choir members’ voices that touched Pastor Terrell in such a way that he felt it fitting to proclaim it to be their day. Now our choir is nothing but the best on any given Sunday yet this particular day the heart of our shepherd was touched. Nonetheless they were treated to a meal down at Lake Oconee for their Sunday dinner. You can’t beat God’s giving no matter how you try!
If you turn your Bible to 2 Corinthians 1 and read verses 1-7 you’ll know the text for Sunday’s message. When we take on the identity of Christ we take on the good stuff and also His suffering. Now the suffering part is not the popular aspect that we like but we must take on that part too, Pastor Terrell said that there is hope for the saints that suffer. Let’s face it. In this world we are going to suffer but when we suffer for the cause of Christ He will comfort us as no one else can. In this text Paul was writing to the Corinthians and to teach the preachers also. Timothy was with him and Titus had gone before him. God will take preachers through many challenges in life so that they can help carry someone else through their suffering. This not only builds character but it also builds endurance. There are times when God takes the preacher through to carry us through.
In this period Corinth was a place similar to what Atlanta is now. Any and every thing went on there. The name Corinth evens means the city of pleasure. Paul had set up his church there in the midst of all the sin there. People were getting saved, yet there were still problems that arose. This second letter was sent to tell us that we need to do the same things that we did to get saved. When stuff jumps up at us we need to keep going down on our knees. We need to keep going to Bible study. We need to keep coming to church. When suffering begins we can’t stop praising God. No matter what we are going through the Bible says God comforts us in all of our tribulations. The Deliverer is the same. The same One that delivered all those others will deliver you too.
Rev. Terrell stated that many people today don’t want to believe in angels. However they are important when you are in a time of suffering. During this period God dispatches our guardian angels to help us.
Another point is that Paul says he has learned to identify with all that Jesus went through. Paul says he has learned to be abased and to abound. He said he has learned to suffer need and to have much.
Of course this goes for us. Life is not going to be a bed of roses all the time. When God brings us out on the abounding side we must keep praising. If we handle the abased period He will make us abound. When it seems that we have more month than money God will teach us how to still praise Him and serve Him during the down times.
God has the power to raise you to be more than a conqueror when you go through your suffering period the right way. After Jesus suffered God rose Him up to be more than a conqueror. We have to know how to live in the period of abounding. You can’t get beside yourself. You can’t keep doing all manner of evil. You can’t stop praising. You can’t stop serving. What you can do is keep your hand in the hand of the Man that will abound the suffering saint. Glory Be To God!