DB Clips: How Do We Thrive In a Fallen World?
Today we’re looking at the question How do you thrive in a fallen world?
As a Christ follower, it can feel overwhelming to be in a world full of darkness with people not just reveling in sin but encouraging others to join in and follow them. Yet God calls us to be the salt and light of the earth. How can we not just overcome this evil, but thrive?
Colossians 1:9-14 says…
And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy (equal) of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy; giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.
God has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. These verses show us for keys to help us thrive.
The first key … is to be filled with God’s Word.
In verse 9 Paul is praying that they be filled with the knowledge of His will. To have spiritual wisdom and understanding. Romans 10:17 says faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. The bible isn’t just an instruction manual, it’s a revelation of God’s love for us, and His desire to see us restored to Him. His word, gives us knowledge and wisdom to practically apply and live our lives in a way that is in many ways contrary to the world we live in. When we see God’s love for us it drives us not from condemnation, but from a desire to please him. It brings us closer to Him. When we fill ourselves with the knowledge of God, His wisdom becomes second nature to us.
In verse 10 we’re told to walk in a manner worthy of God, fully pleasing and bearing fruit. As we grow in our knowledge of God and His great love for us, there is a reordering of our negative thoughts and emotions according to His word. Our concern about ourselves and what people might think is overcome by a desire to show God’s love to those we meet. Our actions produce fruit that affect those around us. You might think, well, maybe that’s for someone with more talent or brains than I. God made a habit of using those in the Bible who thought they couldn’t do something to accomplish great things.
It’s true that on our own we can’t accomplish this, but
Verse 11 tells us we are strengthened with all power, according to HIS glorious might. His word doesn’t say you’re better than you think you are. His word shows us that He gives us that strength. God said to Paul … in your weakness, He is strong . His supernatural Spirit will empower you to do what you could do naturally. The world will tell you to have more self-confidence, but I think as a species we’ve proven time and again that we can ruin pretty much anything. In His strength though, with the faith of a mustard seed, we can move mountains.For the non-farmer, this seed is 1 millimeter in size. It was the smallest seed known.
You see, it’s less important the size of your faith, and more important the object of your faith. You can trust in the stock market, or capitalism, or politics with all your heart, and they will all fail you. The smallest of faith in God though can produce change the world over.
In verses 12-14 we’re shown what may be the most important aspect of thriving. It shows us an attitude of thanks for what God has already given us. Through the sacrifice of His Son, we have been delivered from sin and death, and adopted into His family as children of God. In Hebrews 11, in what’s known as the hall of faith we’re told of many great things done. Yet we also are told about those who never saw the fulfillment in their life but looked forward to what was promised. We will face trials in our lives, but rather than being buffeted by the opposition we face, we can walk boldly through it, knowing where we are headed. We thrive as we stand upon God’s word, trust God’s wisdom, walk in His light empowered by His Spirit, praising Him even in times of trouble and darkness.
Psalm 73: 25-26 say Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God ( you are) the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
If you’d like to learn more about this topic, go to our website at dbcc.com, click on Grow, then sermons. Look for the teaching series on Colossians and click on the sermon titled How to Thrive.