God is Patient on Purpose! #forHenry

newcastlefbcBlog Post, Devotional0 Comments

Bible Reading Devotion for August 31, 2017
from Second Peter 3 found at https://www.esv.org/2+Peter+3/.*
by Pastor Jerry Ingalls

I live in a community that needs a fresh outpouring of God’s grace.

How about you: What does your community need above all things?

Take a moment to pray for your neighbors, your community, your nation. What does God bring to your mind as the greatest need of the people you are surrounded by daily?

When I do this, when I prayer-walk the neighborhoods of my rural city; when I prayer-drive the highways and byways of my nation; when I prayer-sit in the quiet of my office or my home I experience the love of God for my neighbors, my city, my nation, and for our nations. God’s love burns greater than God’s anger.

God is patient to bring judgment to the nations because He has promised to bring the gospel of His grace to all the families of the world: His salvation!

The Apostle Peter teaches us, “The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief…” (2 Peter 3:9, 10a).

God has promised; therefore, He will fulfill the promise of Abraham through His Church. That means we are His chosen messengers of an adoption that brings about blessing. That blessing is for eternal life in Heaven and abundance of His presence in the life that we now live. The Family of God (a.k.a. the Church) is called to bless all the families of the earth.

Jesus Christ was crucified, resurrected, and ascended to the right hand of the Father to intercede for us today until the day of His imminent return. Jesus Christ is coming like a thief in the night to bring completion to the task His Church has been set to for nearly 2,000 years. Have we become hoarders of His promise? Have we become self-centered because of His patience?

How are you bringing God’s blessing of grace to your community?

The Church exists for a reason and once you are saved you become a part of that purpose; your life is no longer your own because you have been bought at a price! The Church does not exist for the Church, but for the communities in which it finds itself!

The members of a church are a missional team for the sake of others, not a membership committee for their own sake!

Local churches are God’s outposts through the four corners of the world. Every community needs a church! Does your community have at least one Bible-teaching, Christ-exalting, Gospel-proclaiming church? If not, maybe you are the answer; God has placed you there to build His Church through His grace.

Today, open your eyes and look at people and ask God to open the eyes of your heart to how you can be grace to those in desperate need of God’s gospel. How can you show them that God has not forgotten them? How can you show them that God is for them and wants them to experience His salvation?

God’s patience in bringing about justice on earth is not because He is blind to our suffering or unaware of our struggles.

God’s patience in bringing about peace on earth is not because He is apathetic to our losses or uncaring of our pain.

God’s patience in bringing completion on earth IS for the salvation of those who are far from Him today. Our suffering, our struggles, our losses, our pain become the pathways for extending grace to people who need a hope greater than anything this life or world can offer.

Rather than being consumed with your life and the anguishes and struggles of this life, be diligent to use the time we have left to be grace to those who need grace. Press in to the time God has given you; every day He delays is an opportunity.

The Apostle Peter concludes, “Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace. And count the patience of our Lord as salvation…” (2 Peter 3:14, 15a).

God is patient on purpose…

*Scripture taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. Copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Text provided by the Crossway Bibles Web Service.

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