Doom, defeat, death or God?

Rod Shimabukuro


For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers, of the affliction we experienced in Asia. For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. 2 Corinthians 1:8-9


A purpose of this letter is to further establish Paul’s authority as an apostle, instructing and correcting Christians amidst their compromises and challenges. Paul gives his life as a testimony for Jesus and HIs good news. Although the new message of of a risen Messiah is spreading, the cost is great as seen in Paul and the disciples suffering.

To be so despaired of life because of the burdens is not new to our culture and society. Mounting pressures that lead to hopelessness make for people to make desperate decisions-even leading to suicide. For Paul, his overwhelming emotions resulted from the hardships of living and leading for Jesus.


Even as a Jesus loving, following, worshiping Christian, I get overwhelmed. How often have I said I can’t wait for Jesus to come back or to get to heaven??!! Isn’t that welcoming the Lord to “take me home?” But like Paul, may I believe towards relying on God - not myself.

My application is simple with godly sincerity. I want to live differently by behaving according to God’s Word, not my feelings, opposition I face, fears, persecution (which I have none compared to Paul or present day Christians dying for their faith). My circumstances or emotions won’t always be aligned with godly, Biblical behaviors - so I rely on God through prayer, my brotherhood, personal worship and time in HIs Word - to strengthen my spirit and mind.

For our boast is this, the testimony of our conscience, that we behaved in the world with simplicity and godly sincerity, not by earthly wisdom but by the grace of God, and supremely so toward you. 2 Corinthians 1:12


Oh Yeah! God! You are the dead raiser - life giver - and heart filler....with hope and eternal perspective. Fill my heart once again, with this Spirit boldness - to live, love, give of myself for Your Kingdom’s call and purposes! Strengthen my weak and fearful heart. Fill me with Your renewing, refreshing Spirit of confidence - to live for and give my all - TO YOU!

Devotions for November 15

Job 41,42
2 Corinthians 1,2

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