People have asked me how I am staying so strong during the trials my family is going through, so I thought I’d share my secret with you. My answer may seem simplistic, but it is simple:

The grace of God.

That may sound trite to some of you, but God’s grace is a real, tangible force that gives you supernatural strength when you are going through a trial – BUT you must tap into it. (I will show you how in a minute)

God’s grace was the answer Jesus gave to Paul when Paul was asking Him for help as Satan was in all-out assault mode against him. Jesus’ answer was…

My grace is sufficient…” 2 Corinthians 12:9a

Another translations puts it this way,

My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9a

Once Paul experienced this grace, he was able to write,

So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9a-10 NLT

Isn’t that amazing? Once Paul learned that it was his areas of weakness that drew the grace of God and transformed the areas of his greatest weaknesses into the areas of his greatest strengths, he viewed his weaknesses completely differently. He saw them as the access points for the power of Christ! That is why he even went as far as to celebrate his weaknesses!

So, how do we tap into this grace? Again, this may sound simplistic, but that’s because it is. God had to make it simple for us.

Here are the three ways I tap into God’s grace every day:

1. Prayer and Praise

I do not feel like praying when I get up, do you? No. In fact, I don’t even want to get up! However, I know that if I don’t drag myself to my prayer-chair and begin praying the day will start without me and I will be operating out of my own strength. I cannot afford to do that – and neither can you.

Simply start with, “Father”. That’s what I do. It kickstarts my prayer time. Then I use the Lord’s Prayer as a framework for my prayer time. Jesus gave us this prayer model in answer to His first disciples asking Him to teach them how to pray. Therefore, it must be a great way to pray! (HERE is a prayer guide I developed to help you using the Lord’s Prayer)

2. Prioritizing God’s Word

The Bible is the primary way God will speak to you. It is not just ink on paper, it is God’s words speaking to you by His Spirit. Reading God’s Word daily is the same as eating daily. It will strengthen you!

“For this reason, we also thank God without ceasing, because when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which also effectively works in you who believe.” 1 Thessalonians 2:13

3. People

You cannot succeed against the enemy alone – period. The Christian life is not a solo sport. You are on a battlefield and you need protection. You need to run with a troop. You need others, and others need you.

Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help him up.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 NLT

It has been my friends and family who have held me accountable to my call that has seen me through thus far. When I have been discouraged, they remind me what a difference I am making. When I have been overwhelmed, they have called me with a word they’ve gotten from the Lord for me. When I have been hurt by others, they will not let me stay in unforgiveness. God has used them to help me stay on track and to stay strong.

You cannot make it alone, and you don’t have to even try. That is what the Body of Christ is for.
We have a whole host of ways for you to get connected and get involved at GPC. (Check out these opportunities)

If you would like to get into prayer, prioritize the Word, and connect with God’s people, I host a prayer meeting every Wednesday night (that’s tonight!), as well as a Bible study every Thursday night. Check out the time and Zoom links below. I would love for you to join me!

Wednesday Prayer: 6:56pm-7:56pm
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/7182108077?pwd=d0tCbS94Z1ZjRUkyeGdNZW1MN2RXZz09

Thursday Bible Study: 7:10pm – 8:10pm
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/7182108077?pwd=d0tCbS94Z1ZjRUkyeGdNZW1MN2RXZz09

Heaven on Earth,
John

P.S. Resurrection Sunday: Please be praying about who you will invite to join you at our Resurrection Sunday service two Sundays from now – April 4th – either in person or online!