Living in Romans 8:28

“If you live inside this massive promise, your life is more solid and stable than Mount Everest. Nothing can blow you over when you are inside the walls of Romans 8:28. Outside of Romans 8:28 all is confusion and anxiety and fear and uncertainty. Outside this promise of all-encompassing passing future grace there are straw houses of drugs and alcohol and numbing TV and dozens of futile diversions. There are slat walls and tin roofs of fragile investment strategies and fleeting insurance coverage and trivial retirement plans. There are cardboard fortifications of deadbolt locks and alarm systems and antiballistic missiles. Outside are a thousand substitutes for Romans 8:28.
Once you walk through the door of love into the massive unshakable structure of Romans 8:28 everything changes. There come into your life stability and depth and freedom. You simply can’t be blown over anymore. The confidence that a sovereign God governs for your good all the pain and all the pleasure that you will ever experience is an incomparable refuge and security and hope and power in your life. [John Piper]”
– Derek W.H. Thomas.

Cultural Observation: Millennials Struggle With Imposter Syndrome…Like A Lot

BTW NOTE1: This is why the proclamation of grace in Christ–that God knows everything about us, even the very worst, yet accepts us completely because of Christ’s person and work– is a message that will resonate with millennials.

BTW NOTE2: The article also has some interesting insights on social media’s ability to spark feeling of inferiority in people (so social media becomes like the Law), and also has some fascinating stats related to worry and anxiety. 

False Hopes, Wrong Kingdom

“Your hope is absolutely attached to what kingdom you are serving. If your life is defined by how many of your little kingdom purposes you can realize, you will tend to be stressed, controlling, anxious, disappointed, and fearful. You have defined your life by what you cannot control and by what God has not promised. Sadly, it is all very self-defeating. But if your hope no longer rests on your personal wisdom, strength, and character, if it no longer rests on the acceptance and performance of other people, and no longer rests on the belief that circumstances, institutions, and situations will not fail you, then you are beginning to move toward reliable hope.” -Paul Tripp

Table of Contents for Ed Welch, Running Scared

Part One: Initial Observations
Chapter 1. A World of Fear
Chapter 2. Your Fear
Chapter 3. Fear Speaks
Chapter 4. Anxiety and Worry Chime
In Part Two: God Speaks
Chapter 5. Do Not Be Afraid
Chapter 6. The Manna Principle
Chapter 7. The God of Suspense
Chapter 8. Worry about Worry
God Speaks on Money and Possessions
Chapter 9. Do Not Worry
Chapter 10. The Message of the Kingdom
Chapter 11. When the Kingdom Isn’t Enough
Chapter 12. Grace for Tomorrow
Chapter 13. “Seek My Face”
Chapter 14. Where Is My Treasure? Whose Kingdom?
God Speaks On People and Their Judgments
Chapter 15. Do Not Trust in Man
Chapter 16. Love More Than Need
Chapter 17. Fight Fear with Fear
God Speaks on death, pain, and punishment
Chapter 18. Fear of Death
Chapter 19. Fear of Judgment
Chapter 20. A Glimpse of Heaven
Chapter 21. Already Dead
God Speaks: Peace Be with You
Chapter 22. “I Will Be with You”
Chapter 23. “I Promise”
Chapter 24. “Pray”
Chapter 25. Bring on the Worst

Fear & Pain Receptors

“Jesus turned and said to them, ‘Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me; weep for yourselves and for your children. For the time will come when you will say, “Blessed are the barren women, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!” Then they will say to the mountains, “Fall on us!” and to the hills, “Cover us!”’”(Luke 23: 28— 30)
Jesus is saying that when he is finally revealed as the Judge of all (John 5: 27), those who rejected him will prefer the mountains to fall on them than to be naked, ashamed, and condemned before him. In other words, if you reject the King or are a mere dabbler in the kingdom, then your present fear and anxiety are a blessing. They serve the same function as pain receptors, in that they tell you when you are in physical danger. People without pain receptors gradually lose body parts because they don’t realize that they have their hand on the stove or are walking with a piece of glass in their foot. Such people know it is folly to numb those receptors when they are functioning well.” -Ed Welch, Running Scared

All or Nothing Investments

“Anxiety is a string around our finger reminding us that money has become our refuge. Find anxiety about finances and you find sin; it is as simple as that. Confession acknowledges that we still invest in both kingdoms, hoping to minimize our risk. The rule of kingdom investment, however, is all or nothing. All hedged bets are deposited in the earthly kingdom— the one with “mine” written all over it. Everything must go into one account or the other. This doesn’t mean that every penny must go into the offering basket. You might be a world-class giver, at least on your 1040 form, but you still fret about finances. You are not confessing what percentage you give and keep; you are confessing how money has been your hope, security, and confidence. The problems, at root, are relational, and the way to deal with relational problems is to actually confess them to the Lord.” -Ed Welch, Running Scared