Pastor Steve Williams : Finding Inner Strength for Facing Tough Times

Always in Season · 41:34 · Recorded November 4, 2018

Finding Inner Strength for Facing Tough Times

Galatians 5:22-23 (CSB) The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

Joy and Peace: A sense of gladness & well-being independent from our circumstances.

Our supreme model of grace under fire

Colossians 3:15 (NLT) Let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts.

John 14:27; 15:9, 11; 16:33 (NKJV) “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid…As the father loved me, I also have loved you; abide in my love…that my joy may remain in you and that your joy may be full…These things I have spoken to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”

The ancient technique of “THEOfeedback”

(See Philippians 4:4-8, p.1042)

1. REFUSE to give what’s outside any room on the inside!

Exercise the muscles of your “mind gate.”

Romans 8:6 (NLT) Letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace.

2. REQUEST the prayer that’s needed from the God who’s able.

Psalm 29:10-11 (NIV) The LORD sits enthroned over the flood; the LORD is enthroned as King forever. The LORD gives strength to his people; the LORD blesses his people with peace.

2 Corinthians 9:8 (CSB) God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work.

3. RELEASE the load you’ve got to the Lord who’s got you.

Psalm 94:18-19 (NIV) “When I said, ‘My foot is slipping,’ your love, O LORD, supported me. When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought joy to my soul.”

Psalm 55:22 (NJB) Unload your burden onto Yahweh and he will sustain you.

Psalm 28:7 (NIV) “The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song.”

4. RELAX in the rest that always comes with trust.

Romans 15:13 (NIV) May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Deuteronomy 33:12 (NIV) “Let the beloved of the LORD rest secure in him, for he shields him all day long, and the one the LORD loves rests between his shoulders.”

Everything’s under control.

Everything’s survivable.

Everything’s manageable.

Isaiah 26:3-4 (NKJV)  You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on you, Because he trusts in you. Trust in the LORD forever, for in YAH, the LORD, is everlasting strength.

  • Read Galatians 5:22-23. Which of these descriptions of the Fruit of the Spirit would you say you’re pleased to see blossoming in your life? Which are still in the bud that you’d like to see yourself developing more?

  • Look again at the working definition of joy & peace covered at the beginning of the message. How do you think these differ from simple happiness?

  • Review Philippians 4:4-8. Make a listing of the commands given. Then list the promises that are given. If Paul were writing this today to modern Christians in America, what might he say differently?

  • HOW exactly, does a person go about obeying the command found in Philippians 4:4? What part do you think the Holy Spirit plays in helping us with this?

  • Consider Philippians 4:8. How do you think Paul would address the effect of modern “mind pollution” and preoccupations with leisure, media consumption, television and movies, etc.? Look at the list Paul says should make up our mental diet. Give specific examples of what each of these descriptive words would look like in practice. What difference would it make if we obeyed or disobeyed the command in this verse?

  • Which of the scriptures from this message has spoken to you most powerfully? What specific encouragement will be your take-away from them?

  • Elementary parents, today your children started a series on generosity which we define as love in action. Ask kids who Jesus said was generous in our Bible story. (The poor widow) Jesus said she was generous because she gave all she had even though it was only a few cents. Our bottom line is if you have a little or a lot, just give. Check out your child’s handout to learn more.

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