Be Encouraged

Encouraged 31

“I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel, so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to all the rest that my imprisonment is for Christ. And most of the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.”

~ Philippians 1:12-14

I often times wonder if I’m doing this whole thing right.  Do you ever feel that way?  In the midst of Covid, I wonder if I’ve been the example that Christ has called me to be.  Have I lived as His ambassador, proclaiming the Gospel to those around me in word and in deed?  Have I taken my anxieties, my frustrations, my anger, or my concerns to Christ in prayer, or have I used them as an excuse to treat other people badly, especially those I disagree with?  Am I more concerned with my neighbor’s health and well-being, or am I more concerned about meeting my own needs?

Here’s what I know…Christ has given us today so that the Gospel can effectively be proclaimed.  Paul, in his imprisonment, didn’t complain.  As a Roman citizen, he had every right to walk as a free man.  Instead, he used his loss of freedom as an opportunity to share Christ with prison guards, Roman officials, and eventually even Caesar himself.  And, while others could have run in fear of a similar circumstance, they were emboldened by Paul’s imprisonment, and shared Christ all the more.  Paul knew what his mission was, and his circumstances never changed that.

In the midst of our plight, let’s not forget the real goal here, Christians.  The ultimate goal shouldn’t be individual rights.  Paul freely gave up his rights to minister Christ where he was.  The ultimate goal shouldn’t be winning a political battle, because Paul wasn’t concerned about politics.  This isn’t about forcing someone to believe your point of view.

Christians, our ultimate goal is and should be telling people about Jesus Christ.  We should be having conversations about the saving grace of Jesus that saves us from our sins.  We should be proclaiming that miracles exist today, and that the greatest miracle of all is that Jesus is still saving sinners from their sin, from darkness, the grave, and hell, and giving them a new life and hope for eternal life.  We should seize this opportunity, lay our agendas down, and take up the cause of Christ who commissions us to tell the nations about Him.

Friends, don’t allow yourself to get caught up in the affairs of this world.  We are on a mission that is far better and more glorious than anything this world has to offer.  Fight for Jesus, fight for the Gospel, fight for hope, and fight for the souls of those who have yet to surrender their lives to Jesus.  Today is your day to fulfill the right mission, the mission and the cause of Christ.  Go and spread the good news!

Be Encouraged! 

Pastor Chris <><

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Pastor Chris Ridler

Pastor Chris is married to his beautiful wife Becky and has a precious son named Noah. Chris received his Bachelor’s degree from Northwestern State University and is currently working on his Master’s of Divinity at Reformed Theological Seminary. Chris has served in full time ministry for over 13 years – as either a Youth Pastor, Worship Pastor or House Parent and is passionate about seeing people grow in their walk with Christ and disciple others for the glory of God’s kingdom.

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