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S.A.N.S. Episode 143: Go Through Fire

Today’s featured song comes from a multi-talented individual who is a Christian artist, musician, songwriter, record producer, and speaker. Rob Frazier’s father W. Burwell founded the Warrington Fellowship Church in Bucks County Pennsylvania. Since I grew up about 30 minutes from this church, it’s no wonder that Rob Frazier’s albums were easily accessible at nearby Christian bookstores in Delaware.

[You should] be exceedingly glad on this account, though now for a little while you may be distressed by trials and suffer temptations, 1 Peter 1:6.

Frazier’s song Go Through Fire appears to be inspired by the passage above. Peter writes about the refining process brought on by the trials that all human beings are forced to endure. However, if you want to grow and mature spiritually, you must go through these unexpected fires that arise weekly and monthly. May this classic ballad touch your heart and inspire you to draw closer to Jesus.

by Jay Mankus

Perspective is Everything

When you’re talking to a co-worker, friend or family member, perspective is everything. Depending upon your age, background and life experiences, outlooks will vary. One bird’s eye view often provides a broad and complete picture which few have ever seen. Meanwhile, a maturing Christian will likely alter their perspective as they draw closer to Jesus, James 4:8.

O Timothy, guard and keep the deposit entrusted [to you]! Turn away from the irreverent babble and godless chatter, with the vain and empty and worldly phrases, and the subtleties and the contradictions in what is falsely called knowledge and spiritual illumination. 21 [For] by making such profession some have erred (missed the mark) as regards the faith. Grace (divine favor and blessing) be with you all! Amen (so be it), 1 Timothy 6:20-21.

The apostle Paul writes two letters to a teenager pastor to share his own perspective. Perhaps, Paul was trying to play a similar role that Barnabas played in his own life. Following his conversion on the Road to Damascus, none of Jesus’ disciples believed that Paul was genuine about his newfound faith. According to Luke, Barnabas convinced the disciples to accept Paul as a fellow believer, Acts 9:27.

But I say, walk and live [habitually] in the [Holy] Spirit [responsive to and controlled and guided by the Spirit]; then you will certainly not gratify the cravings and desires of the flesh (of human nature without God). 17 For the desires of the flesh are opposed to the [Holy] Spirit, and the [desires of the] Spirit are opposed to the flesh (godless human nature); for these are antagonistic to each other [continually withstanding and in conflict with each other], so that you are not free but are prevented from doing what you desire to do. 18 But if you are guided (led) by the [Holy] Spirit, you are not subject to the Law, Galatians 5:16-18.

Paul went from a persecutor of the church, overseeing the death of Stephen, to a repenting sinner who returns to his hometown to tell others how God had changed his life. Yet, shortly after this revelation, Jewish leaders tried to kill Paul, Acts 9:23-25. This persecution gave Paul a new perspective on life, of how Jesus laid down his life for mankind, Romans 5:8. Meanwhile, Paul served as a mentor for several new first century Christians to provide a Christ-like perspective on life.

by Jay Mankus

Trust the Process of Faith

My high school youth group used active learning exercises to illustrate biblical truths. The one I remember the most is where someone was asked to stand up on a platform. Instead of jumping into a crowd of teenagers, the volunteer is asked to turn around and close their eyes. On the count of 3, this person would fall backwards as two additional volunteers lock arms to catch the person falling.

Strengthen (complete, perfect) and make you what you ought to be and equip you with everything good that you may carry out His will; [while He Himself] works in you and accomplishes that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ (the Messiah); to Whom be the glory forever and ever (to the ages of the ages). Amen (so be it), Hebrews 13:21.

If you have ever struggled with trust, this is a good exercise to participate in. You are forced to place your trust in two strangers that you can’t see since your eyes are closed. The author of Hebrews urges readers to be strengthened in their faith. If you trust that God is working in your life, each day provides a series of obstacles and trials to complete the process of spiritual maturation.

Consider it wholly joyful, my brethren, whenever you are enveloped in or encounter trials of any sort or fall into various temptations. Be assured and understand that the trial and proving of your faith bring out endurance and steadfastness and patience. But let endurance and steadfastness and patience have full play and do a thorough work, so that you may be [people] perfectly and fully developed [with no defects], lacking in nothing, James 1:2-4.

The earthly brother of Jesus adds joy to trusting the process of faith. Like an athlete who thrives in the midst of competition, Christians should embrace opportunities for spiritual growth spurts. Whether you are forced to endure hardship, persecution or undergo temptation, consider any of these situations a pure joy. By trusting the process of faith, maturity will continue as you grow and draw closer to Jesus in 2022.

by Jay Mankus

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