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Pressure Points are Pruning Points

Applying John 15:1-17 to Our Trials
Everyday life includes difficulties, trials and pressure points. Your calling is to bear fruit for God's glory in the context of these everyday realities. Difficulties and trials are actually opportunities for growth – opportunities to experience the Father's pruning. Pressure points are pruning points. In an effort to apply John 15:1-17 in the midst of trials, ponder these questions:
  1. Is my heart attitude that my heavenly Father is pruning me (refining me) in the midst of this trial? (John 15:2)
  2. Is my heart's desire to be in fellowship with Jesus and for his life to flow through me in the midst of this trial? (John 15:4-5)
  3. Am I remembering that Christ's love for me is essential to my stability in the midst of trials? (John 15:12-13)
  4. Am I giving attention to Christ's words in the midst of this trial? Are Christ's words shaping my perspectives and values? (John 15:3, 7, 10-11, 15)
  5. Am I letting Christ's words shape my prayers related to this trial? Am I praying in accordance with Christ's priorities and purposes? (John 15:7)
  6. Will I obey Christ in the midst of this trial? In particular, will I love others in the midst of this trial – including those who may be part of the difficult situation? (John 15:9-10, 12-17)
  7. Finally, realizing that I am not the only one going through trials, will I encourage my fellow Christians to live in response to John 15:1-17 in the midst of their trials? And will I humbly receive encouragement from others when they remind me to faithfully follow Christ?
May the Lord's grace be with you.
(this devotional thought was originally written by Pastor Brian back in 2010, during his pre-SPBC days, under the title "APPLY JOHN 15:1-17 IN THE MIDST OF TRIALS")

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