Pastor's Corner
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In our journey of faith, we will necessarily encounter challenges, difficulties, problems, trials and all the things that translate to the word trouble. This is usually part of God's plan for our journey, and will lead to suffering. The divine purpose of suffering is to strengthen, refine and refocus; however, in our hands, suffering can very easily be mismanaged. We can very easily look at suffering as a sign of God's disapproval and abandonment. This will take us to four unfortunate steps. On the downward spiral.

Firstly is wrong perception. We begin to look at suffering from a place of negativity and it begins to destroy us.

Secondly, is wrong focus. We focus on our strength and resources, rather than our responsibility. When we are in suffering, we have a responsibility, which is to trust God and call on his name, while standing firm on what God has said.

Thirdly, we can descend to the place of discouragement, which is caused by the disappointment that suffering brings. Discouragement causes us to lose strength, our energy petters out and we become increasingly stressed out and vulnerable to the enemy.

Fourthly, we can choose to give up and become angry with God. When we give up, we stop taking responsibility and give way to Satan, and God loses ground. His agenda suffers a big blow and his purposes are negatively affected. When we get angry at God, we become hostile to Him and become our own worst enemies. We undermine our faith, poison our relationship with him and destroy everything that we have been building.

Today, we have very instructive lessons from Nehemiah's response to opposition. Firstly opposition, or challenges or suffering is always a sign that you are scaling the right wall, especially if you are walking right with God. If you press on in righteousness, Satan will press against you in torment and oppression.

Secondly, we must prepare for suffering because it will come. A lot of people get beaten down by challenges because they never prepare for them. They expected to have a rosy walk with God..

Thirdly, we must take a stand and resist suffering, not avoid it. As we go through the suffering, we must resist every attempt to give up on God's agenda and give in to Satan's schemes.

Fourthly, we must continue with our journey of faith unabated, even if it slows down. We must not stop even when challenges slow us down, and we must not side track even when the journey gets intense and the suffering gets more pronounced.

Fifthly, we must keep encouraging one another so that we do not give up and lose heart. Discouragement hemorrhages our faith badly.

Sixthly, we must stay focused and never take our eyes off the mark. The moment we lose sight of the Lord and the prize for which he has called us heavenward in Christ Jesus; we start to focus on many other things which are not important.

Lastly, Nehemiah always prayed. The greatest antidote to suffering is fervent, persistent, focused prayer.

Pastor's Weekly Corner

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Lavington United Church was founded in 1960 through a joint effort of the Anglican Church of Kenya (ACK), Methodist Church of Kenya (MCK) and the Presbyterian Church of East Africa (PCEA) as a community church to minister to the Lavington community. <<Read full History>>

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