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Faith and Not Magic

Dear Friend,

Please read, this is so powerful!

GiG, I am tired. I missed out on keeping Sabbath on Sunday in order to attend my final EMDR training. I started my week in thought, “I have few words of encouragement for myself let alone clients today.” And what does God do but show up and show out. He had four former students/alumni contact me within minutes of one another. With each person, their stories of stress and triumph, frank honesty and openness wrapped in a desire to seek godly counsel, wisdom, and practical application blew the lid off my bucket of encouragement. I went from “I don’t have enough to give to someone else. I am drained dry” to words of acknowledgement, normalizing their stressors, and reframing their thoughts to provide hope. At the end of each talk, God filled what was emptied. I’d say I passed this testing, which brings us to today’s focus in Matthew 4:5-7.

5 Then the devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, 6 and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say, ‘He will order his angels to protect you. And they will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.’” 7 Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the Lord your God.’” NLT

GiG, from this vantage point, Jesus could see all of Jerusalem behind him and the country for miles in front of him. We too can see clearly if we look at our circumstances through the right lens. God is sovereign over all things, people, places and events. But don’t get it twisted; God is not a magician nor our magical bellhop in the sky ready to perform on our request. Jesus once taught that if people aren’t willing to believe what is written in the Bible they won’t believe even if someone were to come back from the dead to warn them (Luke 16:31). OUCH!

It’s simple; God wants us to live by faith not by magic.

May we be encouraged to study the Bible carefully. Sometimes well-meaning friends or associates will present attractive and convincing reasons why we should try something we know is wrong or is on the fringe. They may even find Bible verses that seem to support their viewpoint. Let’s use this time of isolation to study carefully the broader contexts of specific verses so that we understand God’s principles for living and what he wants for our life.

God’s Got It…so SEEK HIM—Only if we really understand what the whole Bible says will we be able to recognize errors of interpretation when people take verses out of context and twist them to say what they want them to say.


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