Giving Good Advice

During the past couple of weeks I have had some unexpected opportunities to share my faith with some strangers who were going through some difficult times in their lives or facing various challenges.  These unexpected opportunities should be viewed as divine appointments set by God so that we can share about His willingness to provide mercy, grace and forgiveness to those who come to Him in humility.  As the Bible says in Psalm 51:17 “A broken and a contrite heart, O God, You will not despise.”

I am always grateful when I have my wife with me on these occasions as the Lord always uses her to share some insight or perspective that I may overlook.  She is a blessing and a gift not only to me in marriage but also in ministry.  Through the years I have also come to very much appreciate Paul’s petition for prayers from the church in Colossians chapter 4 where he asks them to pray that he may have more divine appointments and to pray that when he does share, he will make the most of each moment, knowing how to respond and having the ability to speak with clarity and purpose.  With the various circumstances that people are facing, sometimes it is difficult to know how to respond.  Though I answer prayerfully and graciously, I sometimes worry if the words and the counsel are appropriate for the myriad of issues that may be attached to what is brought up sometimes in only just a few minutes of someone sharing.  While I know that some advice could be better, I know one thing that no one can argue with.  My own personal experience can be summed up by Psalm 34:6:

Psalm 34:6  This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him And saved him out of all his troubles.

I can assure you that the Lord is still in the saving business.  He sets up divine appointments so that we may have the blessed opportunity to strike up conversations with others and listen to their stories and then tell them of God’s great love for them.  Many problems and issues can only begin to be sorted out by starting with having the proper relationship with God through His Son Jesus Christ.  God so loves the world that He gave His one and Only Son so that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  The Bible says that whosoever calls upon the Name of the Lord shall be saved.  In this world we don’t have to know all of the answers; we just have to know where to begin to look.  If you or someone you know has troubles, have them look to the Lord and cry out to Him.  The answer starts there.  Any other solution is just a temporary and will not stand the test of eternity.

There was a time in my life when I had a chip on my shoulder and had more issues than I have now…if you can believe that.  My life began to turn around when I looked to the Lord and cried out in repentance.  Like everyone else, I had sinned and done things that were outside of God’s will.  My sin separated me from God and kept me from enjoying the blessings of His fellowship.  Once I figured out that doing things on my own wasn’t working too well, I called on Christ and asked Him to forgive me, to strengthen and to help me.  He did.  Over the years He has had to do a lot of work on me.  He is still doing some work…keep praying for me!  Everyone has a need to call on the Lord for forgiveness.  If you do, He will save you from all of your troubles.  A journey of learning, healing, and growing can begin.  If you know Him as your Lord, be prepared to tell somebody how good He is.  Be ready for a divine appointment this week.  Until next time keep the faith.

About pastorpstephens

I have been blessed to have served as a pastor, a chaplain and to have been involved in other ministries throughout the years. My wife Marta and I have been blessed with a wonderful family that includes our daughter, her husband and their two daughters and our son and his wife and their son. Each of them are very special to us so please keep them all in your prayers. One truth that I always try to share with people I meet is that anything God asks you to do, He will help you to do. God has your back.
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