River City Church - Smyrna, GA

Equipping the Saints Pt. 2

February 21, 2021

Josh shares from Mark 1, where Jesus is baptized and then immediately led to the desert for 40 days. He here's God call him his Beloved -- receiving his identity -- and then is led into the wilderness to be tempted. We can get caught thinking once we come to Christ that life is going to be full of blessings, but Jesus' own story shows us how wrong a perspective that is. When we read in Ephesians 2 about being saved by grace and being dead to sin, we can think that our suffering is behind us. Sometimes, God leads us into deserts to draw us closer and take us deeper. Mark 1:9-15; Ephesians 2:1-10.

Josh shared a quote from Henri Nouwen: "Every time you listen with great attentiveness to the voice that calls you the Beloved, you will discover within yourself a desire to hear that voice longer and more deeply. It is like discovering a well in the desert. Once you have touched wet ground, you want to dig deeper."

Josh provided questions to ponder this week: Questions for a Desert Season

1) Do I see struggle as an indictment or an invitation?

2) Do I feel okay knowing that I'll have more time to think? What will I do with silence ... Can I handle it?

3) This will be a place where the feelings I have outrun will catch up with me. How do I feel about that?

4) What will I do if I encounter my own wild beast? 

5) Will I take the temptation of a promise of a half-dead life and head back to where I came from? 

6) Do I trust that all of this is from God and that he is with me? 

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