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January 17, 2017, 2:56 PM

January 18, 2017

“Then his wife said to him, “Do you still hold fast your integrity?  Curse God and die!”  But he said to her, “You speak as one of the foolish women speaks.  Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?”  In all this Job did not sin with his lips.  Job 2:9-10 (NASB)

    Integrity is a word that is used very loosely in our culture.  Integrity means adherence to moral and ethical principles and a soundness of character and honesty.  For Christians, it means following the example set forth for us by Jesus.  We are constantly faced with situations that tempt us to alter our integrity.  This happens among young people with peer pressure, but it is a real issue for all of us.  People desire to coax us into the “fun” of this world by leaving the truths of God’s Word behind.   Actually, it is not so much people themselves as the enemy using them to make us vulnerable.  He has always worked that way because he desires to affect our witness and purpose. 

    Far too many take God’s principles (as set forth in His Word) for granted.  There will be times when we are tempted to give up and give in to the pressures surrounding us.  However, we must remember that God has never promised that the Christian life is an easy way.  Job experienced that firsthand without the support of his wife.  She could be described as many Christians are today.  As long as life progresses according to our plans without any setbacks, we are all set to follow Christ.  Yet, what happens when adversity strikes?  Job’s wife questioned his faithfulness to God and recommended that Job just “curse God and die”.  Look carefully at Job’s wisdom in the verses above.  “Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?”  A quote this week sums up Job’s dependence on God.  “Adversity is a bridge to a deeper relationship with God.”

    Adversity comes into all of our lives.  How we respond to the adversity speaks clearly of our love for God and our devotion to Him.  People will taunt you, ridicule you and even question your heart’s desire to follow God.  Yet, we know that in the most difficult times, we have learned to depend totally on God for comfort, strength and guidance.  Can you imagine our lives without adversity?  We would be so puffed up with pride and arrogance that we would never seek God’s direction and fellowship.  You may be in the midst of adversity even as you read this but always know that God is with you, loves you, cares for you and is deepening your relationship with Him as He guides you through the situation.  If you are not experiencing adversity at the moment, praise God and ask Him to prepare you for the day that it will come.  May we, as Job, understand that the LORD gives and takes away but we still praise His name forever!

                                                                                                                                                 We love you,

                                                                                                                                                 Brad and Virginia


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