By His Grace: Be encourage in the Lord, do not give up!

Edith Nevis

“Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”

Edit Nevis

Life has it shares of ups and downs. These past four months since Hurricane Ida have tested even the most faithful. With each passing day, many have begun to lose hope. As I sought the Lord in prayer for answers, suddenly it occurred to me to lose something means you once possessed it. What is needed now is to help you find it once again.

On a shelf next to my desk sits a plaque that reads: Hope Anchors the Soul.

Question: Where have you set down your anchor, and in whom have you placed your hope?

First, we must understand the purpose of an anchor. An anchor is used to prevent what it is connected to from drifting due to wind and currents. Wind can knock you off your feet, while a current can pull you up and under the water. If caught unprepared, trouble is sure to follow.

With Christmas and New Year’s upon us, there are many who are in doubt and fearful of the future. Always remember the word of God is your anchor. Do not fear. He is faithful to His promises. Whatever you need from the Lord will be there if you stay in faith and believe. Do not give up!

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. ...”

As we begin to live life forward once again, question for many is where we go from here. Firmly place your faith in Christ for it is where hope shall begin. For it is written: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

Faith in the Lord is essential when experiencing personal triumphs over unforeseen circumstances beyond your control. For it is written: “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.”

Each time a challenge beyond our control presents itself, we come to a crossroad where a choice is made. Do you and I stand by faith or fold under pressure of life?

Often obstacles are designed specifically to strengthen us spiritually. God allows his children to encounter unforeseen circumstances such as pandemics, chaos in the land and storms to edify and mature us in our faith.

“Because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.”

To live at peace within ourselves regardless of what is going on around us, you and I must be firmly anchored in the Lord. You may ask how you begin. First a relationship must be established with the Son of God. For those who desire a relationship with the Lord, or would like to renew it, allow me to extend an invitation to experience his unconditional love for you. By your own free will you accept Christ as Lord and savior.

When you declare with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, it is written you will be saved. This has nothing to do with religion and all to do with a relationship. For it is written, "It is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved."

Please repeat this prayer: "Lord, Jesus, forgive me of my sins I committed against you. I believe Jesus died for my sins and has risen again. Please come into my life and heart and lead the way. I confess you as my Lord and savior from this day forward. In Jesus' name, amen."

Welcome into the family of Christ.

Until next week, be blessed and go in peace. Shalom.

Bible references: Isaiah 40:28-32 NIV; Psalm 23 NIV; Hebrews 11:1 NKJV; Hebrews 11:6 NIV; James 1:3-6 NIV; Romans 10:9-10 NIV.

-- Edith Nevis can be reached at 857-2200 or at enevis@gannett.com.