House Church Pastor: Two Secrets For a Happy Christian Life
By Elsie Hu, August 16, 2017 07:08 AM
What is the secret to a happy Christian life? A pastor elaborated on this at a forum hosted by a fellowship in Hangzhou.
First: Understand God's purpose for us.
- We must know our hope for this life
"There is a unbiblical saying among Christians: 'All of your trouble will go away once you follow Jesus Christ. God will guarantee your health and success as long as you do the right thing and stick to it.' The pastor said, 'In fact, there is no such promise in the Bible because Jesus said: 'In this world you will have trouble.' (John 16:33) Trouble is part of our life without exception." Christians should have a correct attitude toward trials and hardships. The Bible says: "Everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted." (2 Timothy 3:12) "We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God." (Acts 14:22)
- We must be clear that God loves us and wants to give us the best
God loves us as he loves his Son, so He only wants to give us the best. He always seeks the greatest benefits for us and He will not allow us to settle for something less even when we're willing to. When David thought about how God loved and cared for him, he cried: "How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them!" (Psalms 139:17)
- We must know God's purpose for us
The pastor said: "God not only wants us to be happy and successful, He desires us to have the image of His son." He shapes us through our circumstances with the help of the Holy Spirit, including trials, trouble, and hardships. Therefore, we must expect these things to happen, for this is a necessary way of God, so that we can be more like Christ.
Second: We must believe in God's sovereignty.
- We must believe in God's sovereignty
"When we say that God has sovereignty, it means that He is in control of the world and everything in the universe," said the pastor, "God has all authority both in Heaven and on Earth. Nothing can hinder the way of God."
"It is true that everything serves God." The pastor pointed out that "everything is under God's control, including everything in nature, mankind, all countries, and their kings." Just like what was written in Proverbs, "The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord; he directs it like a watercourse wherever he pleases." (21:1)
Even Satan and those who serve him were used by God to complete His purpose. It was Satan who plotted the death of Lord Jesus; it was Satan who put the evil thoughts in the Jews' heart to betray Jesus; it was also Satan who provoked the crowd to crucifyJesus. However, all of these were in God's control to complete the perfect purpose of saving mankind.
- We must believe that God is good
Satan tries to put his wrong idea in our mind when trials and hardships happen to us. He would provoke us by saying: "God doesn't truly love you. How can a good God let such a thing happen to you?"
If we believe his erroneous idea, it would lead us to self-pity and depression. One way to overcome this is to have correct beliefs. God tells us that He is good no matter what our circumstances are. This is the truth.
- We must believe that God's purpose is perfect
"There are many mysteries in our lives. Christians suffer from disasters and miseries just like anyone else. If we see things with worldly instead of godly eyes, many things will be hard for us to understand." But remember that God doesn't make mistakes. No matter what happens in this fallen world, all of God's accomplishments are perfect. Just as Psalms says: "As for God, his way is perfect." (18:30)
- We must submit our will to God
The pastor mentioned that "There is strength inside of us. It controls everything, including our emotions and wishes. This strength is called will. "What we do is not up to our feelings and wishes, but our will. In order to let God rule completely, He must own our heart.
Though God has a purpose for us, He doesn't force his will on us nor does he take away our free will. If we don't surrender our healing to God, we will lose the perfect plan He has for our lives.
- We must believe that in all things God works for the good of those who love him
Nothing that happens in Christians' lives is by accident. It is all from God or allowed by Him for our eternal benefit.
- We must accept everything that comes from God
To the children of God, everything lies in the hands of our heavenly Father no matter who started it. "We know that God can't be the initiator of evil," said the pastor, "however, the Bible teaches us that nothing can hurt his people outside the will of God." Also, if it is in God's will, it is because He sees it as a blessing for His children eventually.
- We must be grateful
Everything God does for us is to teach us to trust Him. Being grateful in everything is proof that we trust. The Bible says: "Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
Then what is the secret of a happy Christian life? Put simply: see God in all circumstances.
In life we face two choices: follow what we see or follow the faith. The first means that we observe our condition and take actions according to what we see; while the other means that we see God's hand beyond our circumstances. Faith is not some feeling or emotion, it is the choice of our will to believe in the Bible.
-Translated by Grace Hubl
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