Boast In The Lord January 31st, 2022

A Word From James Panza with ADD ON by Thea Guarino

For God, who said, “Let there be light in the darkness,” has made this light shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ.  We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.  We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair.  We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed.
2 Corinthians 4:6-9

Wow!  What an incredible month it has been of Boasting in the Lord.  The stories, experiences, struggles, victories, lessons and growth have been absolutely amazing to read.  Thank you to everyone who allowed us a glimpse in to your lives.  Your testimonies of God’s goodness and faithfulness are inspiring and a “spurring towards good works” in Christ.
Let these testimonies be empowering to you!  God’s plan, hope and future IS for you!  As Paul said above, we are mere fragile jars of clay YET we hold within us the power of God!  
Regardless if we feel pressed, perplexed, hunted, knocked down or wounded; in fact, our clay façade may even crumble, and at times our circumstances may start getting the best of us.  BUT, the power of God within us remains in us and is our light and strength.  We will not be left crushed, fearful, abandoned nor destroyed.  Greater is the presence of God in you than the presence of trouble around you!
Thank you that during this month, day after day, your stories reminded me of the moments in my own life, both big and small, that God remained in and with me even though I was a shattered jar.  I was reminded by the fact that after every night comes a dawn; after every wound comes a healing; after every struggle comes wisdom; after every suffering comes growth and maturity and although the timing might seem long... after every battle comes a victory!
Friends, you and I are living in a very, very dark time in this world.  Hostility towards Christian faith and Christians are at an all-time high in our modern history.  What’s worse is that this hostility is extending among us, against each other within the “Church” as well.  I find this to be the most tragic.  
However, none of these issues sway me one bit!  You and I must determine to remain in Christ and allow His light and power to shape us; fragile jars of clay we may be, we are still empowered by the author of life Himself!  We submit ourselves bit by bit each day, that His Spirit may rise more and more in us each day.
In addition, with His light and power in us, comes the responsibility from us, for that same light and power to flow out of us.  We are the light of God in the darkness-we can see clearly, AND can lead others to the light of life only found in a personal relationship with Jesus.
So, for this 2022, fellow “jars of clay”, let’s continue our bold pursuit of God’s plan, hope and future for our lives.  Let us hold dearly and reverently His light and power within us.  And let us light up the darkness- bringing mercy, grace and hope wherever we go.
Blessings, strength and peace on this 2022!
Pastor James

A word of encouragement from the Lord through Thea Guarino:

It’s a new season and a new beginning for you.  Forget the old because I am bringing in the new. If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.  I am constantly renewing and rejuvenating my people.  
I am calling you into a place where you haven’t been before in your journey with me.  The way may seem unusual, even daunting at times, but fear not, you will not be shaken.
All that I’m giving you to do will be accomplished and there is no need to stress over the newness of an unfamiliar project or scene.  I know the beginning from the end and it’s time to move on, break out and break forth.  Arise, shine, for your Light has come and My glory is risen upon you.
Fresh opportunities await you, and with each step you take towards them, your faith will grow and my power and the abilities necessary will be released.  I am creative, and as my descendant, you have this gift of creativity too; this inexhaustible resource is always at your disposal   All that I have is yours and you will bring me glory.
Fresh ideas await you, as is the strength and energy to employ them.  You will not lack any good thing.  Move forward aware of my presence and you will experience my peace and confidence flooding your soul.  Only believe that all things are possible with me at your right hand.  I AM with you always, even unto the end of time.

You crown the year with your good blessings, and you leave abundance in your wake.   Ps. 65:11-13

Be very careful, then, how you live-not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.  Therefore, do not be foolish but understand what the Lord’s will is. Eph. 5:15-17

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