11/23/18

Good morning!
Text:  1 Thessalonians 1-2; Psalm 147
In today’s reading, I am reminded of the freshness of the Gospel.  1 Thessalonians is perhaps the first New Testament literature written.  The Gospel was brand new, and the people who had received it were newborns.  And yet, there was immediate evidence of changed lives.  It says:
For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction…And you became imitators of us and of the Lord…  (1:4-6) 
There is power in the Gospel.  If it lands firmly in someone’s heart, there is power in their life.  They are changed.  Immediately.  It is fresh and refreshing.  There is change of direction, change of ownership, and change of heart and mind.  That change is evidence that Jesus is the real deal, and that the new believer is really alive in Christ.  When we see that newness, it affirms the purposes, plans, promises and power of the Living God,  And, it happens over and over again in the life of our church. We have all experienced it, and we get to see it  in others, right before our eyes.  Changed lives.  Healed hearts.  Joy in place of sorrow.  Hope in place of despair.  Strength in place of weakness.  Peace in place of strife.  Jesus is alive!  Wow!
in Him,  Mike