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Summary: A short sermon for nursing home services.

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STAND FIRM AND GAIN STRENGTH

LUKE 21:19

Most of us who have been students of the actions of Christians in Germany immediately before and during World War II, have been inspired by the faith and the courage of Dr. Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the great Christian leader who chose to leave a safe teaching position in America in order to go back to Germany to oppose the methods of Adolph Hitler. Just before the war ended, Dr. Bonhoeffer was executed.

Before his death while he was suffering in prison, he wrote notes and smuggled them out. Many of those notes have survived and have been published. Some of his notes include a poem titled, "Who am I?" In this poem he shares his doubts and sufferings. He concludes the poem, "Who am I?" with these words, "I am yours, O God." (Paraphrase). Dietrich Bonhoeffer found in his relationship with God, through Jesus Christ, that he was able to have courage, faith, and love for others even when he was facing his own undeserved death.

When you face daily challenges, it is Christ that gives you the energy and the endurance to go on (www.devotions.net).

I. WE GAIN STRENGTH FROM THE WORD OF GOD

ROMANS 15:4-5 = “For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus.”

II. WE GAIN STRENGTH FROM PRAYER

1 THESSALONIANS 1:2-4 = “We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers. We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you.”

III. WE GAIN STRENGTH FROM RELYING ON GOD

REVELATION 14:12-13 = “This calls for patient endurance on the part of the saints who obey God’s commandments and remain faithful to Jesus. Then I heard a voice from heaven say, "Write: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on. "Yes," says the Spirit, "they will rest from their labor, for their deeds will follow them."


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