Day 2 - December 4, 2017

Ticket of Faith

“Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.” Romans 5: 1-4
 
What a gracious God we have to produce grace. Grace is something that is not earned, but given to everyone. We live in lives where we are in control. Or so we think. God lets us choose but he controls where we go. Society teaches us to work, love, and provide for our families. We hope that we have a life that is justified to stand by God in heaven one day. But, hope no longer, as your spot is already saved! Your ticket to heaven has been purchased. My only question is when are you going to catch your train? 

Grace is that ticket. However, we live in a cruel world. A world that is eager to steal your ticket and take you down a different path. Suffering is all around us through shootings, national disasters, and the less fortunate. Suffering is part of life. Suffering creates perseverance. You have to continue to pursue God. Follow him on his ride even if we do not like where it is going to stop. This perseverance leads us to our character. What defines you?

 Suffering and perseverance are just the first two stops of helping defining who you truly are. Each help us discover new aspects of this ticket to faith. After you define your suffering, perseverance, and character, you find your hope. Hope is your purpose; it is why you got on the train in the first place, the reason why you choose to follow God. Each stop is just as important as the last. Completing each one will earn you a ticket. Completing none of them will earn you a ticket. God does not care how you get to him; he just wants you to find your way. Look into your life and see where you are on this train ride to God.
 
Prayer
Dear Heavenly Father, we thank you for being the route to freedom. During this season and in every season, open our eyes to see what stops are left. Show us where to go next. Be our guide as we just jump on the train and hold on. We look to you for guidance. But not only guidance, hope. We trust in you to show us the reason for the bumps along the way. If not on earth, then one day in heaven. We thank you for the ticket to you, and even more for the grace shown in every moment. We enter this season with your grace and continue toward the joyous birth of your Son. In His name we pray, Amen.

submitted by Kurt Hamilton

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