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I would like to share a picture of two people, two women that have been in my life for some time. Both are Christians. They are of a similar age and have both suffered terrible circumstances if loss and abuse.

One if them is bitter, cantankerous, hurtful, spiteful, impatient, self-righteous and uses the name of Jesus to threaten, intimidate and self-justify. The other is sweet, generous towards other’s misgivings, patient, optimistic, humble and there isn’t a time when we meet that she isn’t singing her Saviour’s praises. Oh what a delight to be in the company of this lady.

You see, both have suffered. I am not taking anything away from this and it is good to mourn with those who mourn. There is a time for mourning… We are told in Romans 12 v 15 to weep with those who weep.

But joy comes.

Romans 12 awakens the eyes to a Christian who continuously, earnestly does the right thing despite their circumstances.

giving preference to one another v 10

…not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer…v 12

…do not set your minds on high things… v 16

Do not be wise in your own opinion v 16

…live peaceably with all men v 18

The problems in our lives don’t mysteriously disappear once we pray, but when we trust that God is using them for His purposes and that He has told us through His Word, the Master plan; we can be assured that evil can be overcome. We are to conduct ourselves courageously, remembering the inheritance reserved for those who have tasted and seen that the Lord is gracious.

v 21 Do not be overcome by evil,

Don’t allow the problems you are faced with today cloud your judgement and affect your attitude. 1 Peter 2 12 says

You are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices to God through Jesus Christ.

overcome evil with good.

Give to others more generously than they deserve. Remembering that Christ did this for you. No one wants to be around people who are consumed with bitterness, the fruit of their actions is loneliness. Pray for those who find themselves being eaten away with self-pity, they are often very unhappy…

Pray also that you will know the hope that comes from these verses:

…be patient in tribulation v 12

Shine brightly