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Greg and Megan pastor Camden First Assembly. They desire that people of all ages and walks of life come to know Jesus.
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Side Effects
By Greg Sanders
 
Philippians 1:12-14 I want to report to you, friends, that my imprisonment here has had the opposite of its intended effect. Instead of being squelched, the Message has actually prospered. All the soldiers here, and everyone else, too, found out that I’m in jail because of this Messiah. That piqued their curiosity, and now they’ve learned all about him. Not only that, but most of the followers of Jesus here have become far more sure of themselves in the faith than ever, speaking out fearlessly about God, about the Messiah.
 
The definition of a side effect is “a secondary, typically undesirable effect.”  Paul said that he was persecuted for preaching the gospel and that his persecution had a side effect that his enemy never intended. Instead of his message being squelched, it actually flourished.  I want you to know that this “side effect” principle is still in operation today.
 
  • How you undergo a trial will have an effect on those who are beside you in the trial.
“All the soldiers here, and everyone else, too, found out that I’m in jail because of this Messiah. That piqued their curiosity, and now they’ve learned all about him.” Your character has a way of piquing peoples’ curiosity. Your response when the pressure is on will cause people to take notice of the hope you have, even when everything seems hopeless.
 
  • God can use the enemy’s attack to create a new opportunity for ministry.
Philippians 1:12 says, “I want to report to you, friends, that my imprisonment here has had the opposite of its intended effect. Instead of being squelched, the Message has actually prospered.”  Some of the greatest spiritual breakthroughs in history were birthed out of very trying circumstances. The pressures of your current situation may be part of the formula that God uses to lift His message through your life.
 
  • Your persistence inspires perseverance in other believers.
Paul said that “…most of the followers of Jesus here have become far more sure of themselves in the faith than ever, speaking out fearlessly about God, about the Messiah.” The side effects of your faith do not just touch those going through trouble with you. The side effects of your faith are seen by people who may not be on your radar, but are being encouraged by your faith.  There are people not directly impacted by your present difficulty who are still touched by your example of faith.
 
Today’s Challenge: Realize that your life is having side effects on others. When your hope is in Christ, the effect it has is always positive for the believer and damaging for your enemy. Pray today that as you persevere in the power of Christ that He will be seen through your life. God is still in the business of taking what was meant to destroy you and using it to strengthen His plan for your life. 
 
Copyright © 2016 The Assembly Church of Cabot, All rights reserved.


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