Dear Brothers in Christ,

 Retreat is scheduled on September 24,25,26, 2021.

 Our Wrist Band is  “Loving God Works for our Good” – Reflection on Romans 8:28 Below:

[28 “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”]

In Romans Chapter 8, Paul has been describing the life of Christians on this side of heaven as one of groaning as we long to escape the suffering of this life and to be with our Father God in person (Romans 8:18–23). We wait in the sure hope of the day our bodies will be resurrected and we will share in God’s glory (Romans 8:24–25).

What about all the hard things that come along while we are waiting? Ex.: certainly during and continuing in our COVID pandemic we all have experienced ‘ hard things’. Paul seems to offer the promise of this verse as a comfort for us.

Crucially, though, this promise is limited to “those who love God,” and “those who are called according to His purpose.” In short, that means the promise is for all Christians: for those having belief, i.e., Faith; who have placed their trust in Jesus Christ (John 3:16–18; 14:6; Romans 3:26). No matter our feelings on a given day, loving God is part of what it means to live in Christ. That’s who we are. Each of us is also called to fulfill God’s purposes.

Those who reject God do not express their love for God by coming to Him through Faith in Jesus. For those who die without Christ, things will not have worked out for the better; they will have rejected the opportunity to take advantage of this promise (John 3:36). What is the promise? That, for those who are in Christ, God’s only Son who He gave to us for our redemption, all things will indeed work together for good. [Also see below*] “All things” should be taken to mean each and every circumstance one might experience, even pain or suffering. “Work,” or “work together,” must be understood in light of God taking action in the world. He is the one who causes all things to work together or, perhaps, works in and through all circumstances toward a specific end. What is that end? “Good.”

The word “good” does not necessarily mean happy or painless or financially successful or our idea of the best possible outcome on any given day. God’s ultimate good for us is to glorify us in eternity (Revelation 21:1–4). Beyond that, God works in and through us toward an ultimate good that serves His purpose for all in His creation.

The comfort of the verse is that nothing in this life of waiting and suffering is wasted. It is all meaningful for those in Christ, even if that does not diminish our pain in the moment. For loving God, loving Jesus His Son, will work of our ultimate Good.  Thus, “Loving God Works for our Good.”

Again, we hope that you will plan to join us for our 30th year, the 2021 retreat on September 24,25,26th.

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