Friday, October 17, 2008

Friday Challenge

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil.
May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-24

This is some most excellent advice! If this is your first visit to Friday Challenge, Welcome! This week is packed with a lot of challenges. Please go back up and read these verses again. Invite the Holy Spirit to join you. As you read did something speak to your heart?

Be joyful always
There has been a lot of talk out there in blog land on this one lately. The difference between happiness and joy. One is something the flesh and the world focuses on and one comes only from being filled by more of God. Our joy should not fluctuate with our circumstances or feelings. Are you joyful today?

Pray Continually
What does this look like? For me its being in a constant dialogue with my Creator. An all day even of listening, and asking questions, sharing my heart, and more listening. If we believe He is always with us, we need to be always interacting.

Give thanks in all circumstances
Really? Do we believe that He can bring good out of everything? I think we could all share a time that was incredibly painful, hard, frustrating, diappointing, scary and show how God brought us into closer relationship with Him. For it is His will to use everything to bring glory to Himself, even all of our pain. Thank you Father!

Don't put out the Spirits fire
When Jesus left earth to go be with His Father up in Heaven, He left us with an amazing helper, the Holy Spirit. This helper gives us everything we need to accomplish the purposes He has for us.

Test Everything
Against Gods word. His word trumps all!

Hold onto good and avoid evil
We live in a sinful and evil world, but God is above it all and we must hold onto His promises...which are ALL GOOD!

May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it.
1 Thessalonians 5:23-24


Anonymous said...

What a HUGE challenge!!! This passage as been on my heart for about three weeks now. Still struggling with many parts but have been standing on the truths that God is faithful.. He will not forsake me..He will be my strong tower...
JOYFUL ALWAYS:I too was feeling confused,was becoming depressed because I was not happy...Life, Family, Friends, Church,Economy, The world all seemed to be crumbling. I was trying to bear the pain myself.God is Joy and when I allow him to fill me,I truly see, feel, touch and understand only He can bear the unhappiness.This brings me to PRAY CONTINUALLY: "Oh ye of little faith" God whispered, God shouted, God keep tugging my arm, God kept turning me around, telling me come and I will take that burden; I listened, I PRAYED, I read, I cried, I ignored, I finally stopped and layed it before him, I began to listen, to let go, to let God.I PRAYED, I"M PRAYING,I Will not Stop PRAYING.I will give THANKS for the pain, I know through the Rain God cleanses, refines, and brings JOY to the hearts of us that choose Him.I truly praise Him in all things, because I have faith He will forever continue to fill me with His Holy Spirit, He gave me this spirit to hold on, to KNOW that He is there, to change not on my own but with Him; So therefor I will PRAY God will fill me full of Him.
I will sing..I've got the Joy, Joy Joy of Jesus, down in my heart. Where? Down in my heart to stay.
Thank-You Father in heaven you gave me this time to reflect on YOU and how YOU hold me close and never let go...I Love You and it is in Your Son's name I PRAY, Amen

Pinkshoelady said...

Hi Nicole,
This is one of my husband's favorite passages.

The challanging part for me is the being thankful part.

A friend and I several years ago was traveling home together from seminary. We had an 8 hour drive that turned into a 15 hour drive because of construction on the interstate.
I was getting frustrated when she taught me something that I try to do now instead of focus on the negative. When I remember to do it it helps me to be thankful.
We started playing a game we called "It could be worse" We then thought of as many possiblities we could on how it could be worse. It would quickly turn from frustration to laughter as we tried to top the last "Worse." But it also made us thankful in our circumstances.

Zoie loved the comment you left for her. Thanks for encouraging her. God has His hands on my daughter and that both thrills and terrifies me as a mom. I'm thrilled because nothing makes my heart more humble or proud than to hear and watch her serve the Lord I love! But, It also scares me because I see a huge responsiblitity before me. I don't want to push her but I don't want her to miss opportunities either. I want to protect her but I also want her to lean on God more than me.

Be thankful in everything.

Trust in everything.

I love you my friend!

Edie said...

This is a challenging scripture but it ends with an Awesome promise. "The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it." More and more I am finding great encouragement to persevere, when I look to the end result.

Thanks for this Nicole.

TAMI said...

How wonderful that you and your husband will be working TOGETHER for fitness!!! Having each other for accountability and encouragement will be fantastic!

Chatty Kelly said...

Great post - very encouraging and motivating! God is good all the time, and nothing is impossible with God! Don't let anyone rob your joy!

Kimberly said...

Okay...honestly, I came by here earlier today and read this post. But I just couldn't leave a comment. I was at a place of knowing I NEEDED to be giving thanks, but my flesh was not cooperating. So leaving a cheery comment seemed a bit false. But I knew I needed this reminder! I needed to CHOOSE praise! :)

And thank you, thank you for your prayer. You just don't know how much that meant to me!
You are a blessing,

Becoming Me said...

This was such a good post, sometimes I just glide through that scripture but it is definitely a challenge and a worthy one at that.

Nicole said...

Thanks so much for the reminder! Be joyful always and pray continually is what stuck out to me! Great Friday challenge!