Going to the Next Level, Part 3 This Place
Romans 5:1 (NLT) Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory. 3 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. 4 And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. 5 And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love" ~ Romans 5:2 (NLT)
Your perception of “Your place” or “position” greatly affects your understanding of how God is working in your life. It also affects how you handle situations in your world.
Grace is that place: “Grace in which we stand.” The word he uses for introduction is prosagoge. It is a word with two great pictures in it.
1. It is the regular word for introducing or ushering someone into the presence of royalty; and it is the regular word for the approach of the worshipper to God. It is as if Paul was saying, "Jesus ushers us into the very presence of God. He opens the door for us to the presence of the King of Kings
2. It is the word for the place where ships come in, a harbor from a storm or long journey.
All this sounds good, but how does it help you deal with your difficult circumstances? Remember that when Paul wrote this, it was difficult to be a Christian in Rome. Paul himself faced very difficult circumstances.
The process of standing in your place and grace:
FROM: Tribulations/Troubles: The Greek word doe trouble thlipis means “Pressure.” There are situations that press upon you.
TO: Perseverance/Endurance/Fortitude: The Greek word for endurance is hupomone means more than endurance as in “hanging in there.” Hupomone means the spirit which can overcome the world; it means the spirit which does not passively endure but which actively overcomes the trials and tribulations of life.
In the 17th Century, Beethoven was threatened with deafness at the age of 26. Losing one’s hearing is tragic for a musician. Beethoven showed hupomone or fortitude by continued to compose and write great symphonies. He used devices such as an ear horn. He even placed in head on the piano to faintly hear and feel the notes.
TO: Character: The Greek word for character is dokime. Dokime is a picture of metal which has been passed through the fire so that everything impure has been purged out. In your place of grace when trouble meets with fortitude, you emerges from the battle victorious, stronger, and purer, and better, and nearer God.
TO: Hope Two people can deal with the same situation. The difficulty can drive one of them to despair. For the person who dwells in the place of grace, the difficulty only drives him to triumphant action.
"I do not like crises," said Lord Reith, "but I do like the opportunities they provide."
Here is a strange statement: When you change, your circumstances will begin to change. Ephesians 2:19 Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, 22 in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.