How Can Christians Prepare for Holiday Testing? Are We Ready?

by Jim on November 14, 2013

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Ministry Encouragement Podcast – Episode #072 – 11-14-13

Your Host: Rev. Jim W. Hollis    Our Sponsor: Proactive Ministries (proactive-ministries.org)

Hello and welcome to another weekly Episode of the Ministry Encouragement Podcast.  I’m blessed by your presence with me for this time and am thrilled that you’re helping us build Christian Community among all our listeners around the world.  We are coming close to the start of what is commonly referred to as, “The Holidays.”  In America, these certainly include Thanksgiving and Christmas as two major ones for Christ Followers.

Sometimes in our lives one of the greatest blessings we feel about the Holidays is that there is an end to them.  We often find ourselves going into them very stressed with unrealistic and heavy expectations upon us from either others or ourselves.  Maybe we have family members who are beginning to step up and are attempting to direct what our larger family will be doing for the season without asking us what we feel about their agenda.  Perhaps we have stress on us this year because we have one or more loved one who may not still be living to celebrate Christmas Eve – a time when we have all been together for years.  Maybe the Holidays bring back hard memories of loss and pain.

Or perhaps you’re in a situation where you are rebuilding a marriage and its been getting better.  However, with the Holidays coming up, we know that extra stress and pressure could exceed the limit of newly formed boundaries in our relationship.  And we know there may be special relatives who are going to simply be nosy – far beyond constructive curiosity.  So today, I want to explore the topic:

How Can Christians Prepare for the Holiday Testing? 

Are We Ready? 

Tests are part of life.  When we went to school we learned about tests.  When we learned to drive, we had to pass different tests.  If we served in the military, there were all kinds of tests.  I’ve been a Airplane Pilot for 40 years personally, and I’ve had plenty of tests in that context.  While tests are often dreaded, if we are prepared well we can even look forward to them as an opportunity to move to a new place.

There are three four major Scriptures that I’ll be referring to as we talk about Holiday Testing for Christ Followers today:  (All of these will be from the New Revised Standard Version) 

I Corinthians 10:12-14

James 1:2-4 and 12-17

Luke 10:24-38

I Corinthians 13

A few of the major AREAS of testing that we will be discussing today are:

  • Tests of relationships in families, at work, at church, in groups and in school
  • Tests of our public Christian Witness:

– Driving our Test Vehicles

– Parking encounters and experiences

– Creating DANGER for ourselves and others

With God’s Power and Love at work within us – WE CAN BE READY!

  1. Praying consistently
  2. Cherishing Christian Community
  3. Excited by opportunities to love and model Christ
  4. Initiating conversation with The Stranger

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Thanks again for joining me!  I so appreciate your listening and sharing in our Community.  What’s on my mind during the Holidays this year?  LOVE.  GRACE.  HOPE.  You can help spread these three and other blessings by sharing this Podcast with others in your Email list, Facebook list, LinkedIn contacts or on Twitter.  Any form of Social Media you’re part of can be an easy place to make a difference by sharing this.

If at any time you would like to send me a note of encouragement, ask a question, make a suggestion on how to improve the Podcast, please reach me personally at:

Email: jim@ministryencouragementpodcast.com

Office Phone (Georgia, USA): (770) 803-9988

Facebook: Jim W. Hollis

LinkedIn: Jim Hollis

Ministry Link: www.proactive-ministries.org

Everyone of us is entering the Holiday Season and by listening to this week’s Podcast, we can be better prepared to find the JOY rather than being overwhelmed by the STRESS.  The TESTS are coming.  Let’s be ready in Christ!

Jim

 

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