He never gave up on me…

2 Timothy 4:2-4, “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. (3) For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
(4) And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.”

I have been pleasantly surprised by the response of church members to labor in the RU Recovery Program. Without a doubt, the testimonies of changed lives have a positive effect on renewing hope for others. Some of the best workers are those who have lost loved ones to addictions. I am thinking of a dear couple in Florida who serve faithfully to help others find real recovery. They do so with such bold truth coupled with a passion driven by longsuffering. Their son found out the ways of the transgressor as being hard. He died to a drug overdose several years ago. This couple could have responded in despair and discouragement, but through the preaching of the Word, and working with individuals in the RU program, they offer hope to the hopeless, using their situation to help others.

Many today are hurting in despair, discouragement, and disappointment. The remedy needed is the Word being preached with longsuffering. In our text this morning, we are called on to use the Word to exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. The word “exhort” means to comfort as well, as to urge. A result of this kind of exhorting is a reviving of one’s heart. Everyone that is revived has gained that position because of a transition of their minds from that which lead them to despair. I will be the first to thank those who never gave up on me! The text goes on to say with all longsuffering, which is “an enduring temperament that expresses itself in patience with the shortcomings of others.” It goes on to say with doctrine. Doctrine is that position of right, or what is right. Keep proclaiming what is right, and be sure it is with a spirit of longsuffering.

The need of this hour is revival, and the preacher of God’s Word must exhort God’s people to waken out of their sleep and redeem the time. Christians have fallen asleep to the doldrums of discouragement and despair. We can exhort others today. We can dream for others today. We can help others out of discouragement and despair. All of us can join this couple and the thousands of others who claim Romans 8:28 and look to use the past for His good. ”And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His promise.”

Think About That…(Selah)
1. You either are in despair…or your helping others out of it
2. You are victorious over depression…or you are helping others in it.
3. What was meant for evil, God will use it for good. Find some way to use it for good today.
4. Who is discouraged or in despair today that could use a spiritual lift using the truth of God’s Word today….from you?

Sharing is Caring

God led Ben and his family (wife, Wendy; and three children, Josh, Caleb, and Hannah) to Rockford, Illinois in 2003 to become the International Director of the fastest growing addiction ministry in the United States. Bro. Burks is now privileged to travel and train others how to help the addicted within their communities.

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