“You are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all men; being manifested that you are a letter of Christ, cared for by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.” (3:2-3)
The proof is in the pudding, whatever the weirdo saying means. The evidence of salvation, discipleship, “successful ministry”, is the powerfully changed life. It is deep and, over time, it is wide. We spend a lifetime being refined.
“Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison,” (4:16-17)
As our physical bodies go downhill, our resolve, character and understanding can continue to increase.
Don’t get beat senseless by the horrors or life. Afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed. There is a powerful God sustaining us, cleaning us up, binding our wounds, restoring our broken hearts.
This resolve flows out of a faith that’s seen God’s power in the resurrected Christ and the indwelt Holy Spirit. It flows through the catalogued rememberance of God’s faithfulness and worthiness.
I sometimes wonder why God graciously decided to call us sheep and not stubborn jack asses. He’s so nice, right? He believes we can be responsive to His gentleness. He believes His power can be made perfect in our weaknesses. He believes we can be evidence of each other’s ministry. Wow.
Bring your perplexities to Jesus today and let Him demonstrate His power.