Daily Devotional: 2 Corinthians 1:8-11
This week, we’ve been considering this truth from 1 Thessalonians 5: God wants your trust in Christ and your hope in the gospel to spill out into your life through joy, prayer, and gratitude. Indeed, we rejoice amid all difficulties because of the truth of the gospel. Being in Christ changes everything because we’re united to Him.
"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." —1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Our union with Christ enables rejoicing, but it also overflows into a life of prayer. And our heavenly Father wants this for us. He desires His people to come to Him regularly and consistently. That’s why Paul writes of prayer without ceasing. No, this doesn’t mean that you forego your trip to hunt down toilet paper (good luck!). It means that you live your life in a spirit of dependence and acknowledgment of God. It means that you don’t let the prayerful rhythm of your life get interrupted by the chaos of the moment.
Moms, are you fighting for prayer while your kids climb the walls at home this week? Dads, have you committed to laboring before the Lord in prayer for your family, church family, and neighbors during this season?
I guess that if there’s one part of this verse that we’re nailing right now, this is it. We instinctively begin to pray and acknowledge God in times of hardship. And God wants us to. Consider what Paul said about the difficulties he faced as an apostle:
"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. He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again. You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many." —2 Corinthians 1:8-11
When writing to the Corinthians, he very openly confessed that at times he and his companions even despaired of life because they’re burdens and sufferings were so great. But what reason did God have for this in Paul’s life? “But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead.”
We all know that Jesus said we could do nothing apart from Him (John 15:5). And in these times, by God’s grace, we feel it. So, let us continue to cast our cares upon Him, ITC family, for He cares for us (1 Peter 5:7).