Characteristics of Christians

Who else suffers from anxiety and stress? I know I do from time to time, but as Christians, we should be able to have peace. We’re supposed to rest in the peace that God gives us upon on salvation. Granted, that can sometimes be difficult to do—especially if your personality errs toward perfectionism and worry (like mine does).

As Dr. Stanely’s devotion for today says, though, we should find hope, joy and peace in everything that happens to us—even our difficulties, for they aren’t in vain. God works everything together for the good of those who love him.

When we feel ourselves beginning to stress or worry, let’s immediately stop and say a prayer turning it all over to Jesus. He is our friend and helper and doesn’t want us to carry those heavy burdens that hinder the working of the Holy Spirit.

JANUARY 26, 2021 TUESDAY

Today’s verse from Romans 15 is Paul’s concise description of how God can transform hearts and attitudes when people trust in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. Instead of being filled with fear, anxiety, frustration, and stress, they can now—empowered by the Holy Spirit—be characterized by hope, joy, and peace.

Yet all too often those old emotions come back when circumstances are difficult. We walk around, weighed down with concerns even though Jesus says His yoke is easy and His burden is light (Matt. 11:30). As anxious thoughts and hopelessness take over, we not only suffer personally but also cease to be a light in the world because Christ is no longer reflected in our life. On the surface, in fact, we appear just as pressured, stressed, and fearful as those without Christ.

Although we don’t rejoice in the adversities themselves, we can find hope, joy, and peace in knowing that our difficulties aren’t in vain. God may be refining our character and melting away things that don’t reflect Christ. If we submit to whatever road the Lord has chosen for us, His Spirit will guide us and—slowly but surely—produce His fruit.

Daily Devotions

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