The reason we can be content in the small place, in the role spurned by the world but to which we know God has called us, is the gospel.
After all, the second person of the Trinity was significant. He was, from time immemorial, on the social mountaintop (Phil. 2:6). And he descended to the valley (Phil. 2:7). He became insignificant. And he did it so that you and I, in ourselves insignificant, can be vested with true significance, real glory, not through strategic geographical positioning but through the unmerited love of the Father.
A long life of loving your neighbor in Nowheresville is not insignificant. It is glory, a glory that will one day be trumpeted before the nations as the Lord himself puts his arm around you and introduces you to an ignoring world.
The Battle for the Heart is different than most discipleship programs in that it’s not about giving you a formula to change what you’ve been doing (or not doing). The Battle is about discovering who you were created to be, as a man or a woman, in God’s Larger Story. … … … Transformation doesn’t happen in isolation. It happens when we link arms and do battle together. That’s why the Battle for the Heart is built to be experienced in teams. Together, you will join the fight for a deeply personal understanding of God and His incredible love and grace. Community is not the end result: it’s the pathway to significant, sustainable, fundamental change.
Stress caused by the coronavirus is not only destabilizing marriages it’s also increasing domestic violence in Japan. Anticipating the increase, Japan’s minister for women’s empowerment launched a national hotline in April. Domestic violence researcher Tomoko Suga said one woman came to her for advice after unemployment drove her husband to alcoholism and physical abuse.
For the past 16 years, reported violence in Japan between spouses, as well as between parents and children, grew annually. This year, Amnesty International said the number of Japanese women reporting violence in April was 1.3 times higher than a year ago.
Even without violence, marriages are strained. This year, the term “corona divorce” began trending online as stress from lost jobs, reduced income, and telecommuting ignited conflict in the country.
One Tokyo-based company tried to avert the anticipated wave of breakups by providing short-term rental units in several cities. “The goal is to avoid divorce,” company spokesman Kosuke Amano told Kyodo News. “We hope couples first distance themselves and think about [their marriage]. For our part, we will provide rooms that they can live in and an environment for teleworking.” —J.A.S.
In my devotional times this week I have been looking at Psalm 119. There is so much in the Psalm to look into. Today I wanted to understand better the term “affliction.” I have heard that term all my life and our teaching on Sunday pointed to a very high value of affliction. So I went looking for some further explanation. I came upon this illustrations of the verses from Psalm 119 and the value of affliction to our lives, our souls even.
As we read the Psalm, we find the comfort and the value in what God in doing within us as well as in our circumstances. Psalm 119:50–“This is my comfort in my affliction, that your promise gives me life.”
I also see the goodness of God. Look what He brings to all of us who trust and seek Him. “You have dealt well…” well is the Hebrew “tove” and means “good.” Verse 68 “You are good and do you…” God is good and because He is good, we can trust Him. When He sends affliction we can know that it is for our good.
Here is the tough part, verse 71, “It is good for me that I was afflicted, that I might learn your statues.” Believers in Jesus seek to understand and see the “good” that comes from our affliction. By faith, we can go through affliction, learn and see the goodness of God in them and our good and benefit as an product of affliction.