“Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.” Hebrews 13:20-21
The Lord may use any and every circumstance or situation that may arise in your life to nurture your faith, grow your convictions, or develop your spiritual life. The good events and the bad events can be orchestrated by God to bring about something good in your heart and life. Think Job, Joseph, and Paul. Each of these men endured incredible hardship – and were better men for it.
While we do not like to go through hardship, sometimes the furnace of affliction, the discomfort of pain, and the heartbreak of suffering will cause us to change, and even create more of a desire for the Lord. A helpful verse is 1 Peter 1:7 “That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ…”
The following are the same Greek words for “Make you perfect” from the passage above. These verses, could be precise illustration and application of how the Lord wants to grow you.
He wants to REPAIR YOUR LIFE. Matthew 4:21 And going on from thence, he saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets and he called them.
Just like a broken net, rope coming unraveled through means or use, work, and fighting the outdoor elements, our lives are many times broken. Our purpose, usefulness, and reason for living is sometimes called into question. Our lives can go through seasons of despair and even disrepair. We need to Lord to repair what the hardships of life have broken.
He wants to RESTORE YOUR RELATIONSHIPS. Galatians 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
Life is full of choices. The choices have either consequences or blessing. Depending on the choice, there may be a need for restoration. Pride is the root source of “people problems.” While interacting with others, a personal “fault” or sin may be one sided – or only in the other person. When they confess their sin and repent of it (change their life) we need to be ready to restore. True restoration results in a relationship not being the same as before – but better than before the sin or issue.
If there is someone that has sinned against you, they may or may not know it. If there is no sin, but you have bad feelings toward the person, as the Lord for His grace to change your heart – and your thoughts so the relationship can be restored.
He wants to REFINE YOUR FAITH. 1 Thessalonians 3:10 Night and day praying exceedingly that we might see your face, and might perfect that which is lacking in your faith?
Paul prayed a lot for his friends in Thessalonica. He really wanted to travel to their city and see them again. But his prayer did not stop for hoping to see them again. He also prayed that the Lord would grow, or “perfect” their faith. Paul was asking God to refine the faith of each Christian in the church at Thessalonica.
Is your faith being “refined?” Are the circumstances you are in just something you complain about? Or do you pray for God’s will to happen and for the situation to turn out to bring glory to God?
Will you see God “grow you” more in this new year? Will you allow the Lord to repair, restore, and refine your life?
Remember the classic definition of insanity? “Insanity is to do the same thing over and over while hoping for a different result.” We can do better than that from day to day, month to month, and year to year in our Christian life. Don’t just go through the motions. Be real. Have a genuine walk with Jesus. Let God grow you.
Let Jesus make some changes in your life in 2019.