“Morning by morning, O Lord, you hear my voice”
“Stand Firm in the Faith”
(Please read 1 Corinthians 16:13-14)
Dangers ahead were much on Paul’s mind when he wrote this letter to the Christians at Corinth. Only a few paragraphs earlier he had counseled them to “be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord” (15:58, NASB). Troubles were coming, so he warned them to be ready.
A modern reader in America might be tempted to think that Paul’s warnings aren’t relevant today since we’re not facing persecution. It’s true that we’re not persecuted –- at least not yet. But look at the variety of other influences that pose real threats to our faith. Some of these are common to the human condition, while others seem to be a product of the general prosperity around us. Our faith can be tested by our own serious illness, the loss of loved ones, financial problems, marital difficulties, and on and on. When things seem to be going well for us, we can assume the credit for ourselves and sort of forget the Giver of every good gift. And when things go bad it may be tempting to blame Him for not taking better care of us.
The solution? Perhaps Paul gave it to us in the passage quoted above –- be “always abounding in the work of the Lord.” Faith and good works, you know go hand in hand, and even feed on each other. So when faith falters, get busy doing something for the Lord (which is to say, do something to serve others, in His name).
And by all means, let’s pray today and continually as the apostles did, “Increase our faith” (Luke 17:5). He will.