Tough Times Never Last But Tough People Do (10 Of 10) by James Merritt

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PHILIPPIANS 4:10-20
JAMES MERRITT

"TOUGH TIMES NEVER LAST BUT TOUGH PEOPLE DO"

1. WITHOUT A DOUBT THIS IS ONE OF THE MOST PRECIOUS
PASSAGES IN ALL OF THE BIBLE-. IT IS A PASSAGE THAT
IS PACKED WITH POWERFUL PROMISES. THE TRUTH REPEALED
HERE CAN MAKE AN OPTIMIST OUT OF A PESSIMIST. IT CAN
PUT A SILVER LINING IN THE DARKEST CLOUD. IT CAN GIVE
HOPE TO THE HOPELESS, AND HELP TO THE HELPLESS. IT
CAN MAKE A SLAVE MAN FREE, AND A FREE MAN HAPPY. IT
CAN BUILD UP A MAN'S SELF ESTEEM WITHOUT BUILDING UP
THE MAN. IT CAN TURN DISCOURAGEMENT TO ENCOURAGEMENT
AND DESPAIR TO DELIGHT.

2. KEEP IN MIND THAT THE MAN WHO WROTE THIS PASSAGE
OF SCRIPTURE WAS GOING THROUGH TOUGH TIMES. PAUL WAS
WRITING THIS WHILE HE WAS IN PRISON, HE WAS NOT
WRITING THIS FROM A CRYSTAL CATHEDRAL IN CALIFORNIA,
BUT FROM A POLLUTED PRISON IN ROME.

3. HERE WAS A MAN WHO HAD BEEN UNFAIRLY TREATED. HE
HAD BEEN UNJUSTLY IMPRISONED. ME WAS THE CURSE OF
THE JEWISH RACE. HE WAS CRITICIZED BY HIS OWN BRETHREN.
HE WAS FORSAKEN BY SOME OF HIS CLOSEST FRIENDS
AND YET HE SAID IN V.10, "I REJOICED IN THE LORD
GREATLY, ."

4. NOW HOW COULD PAUL HAVE THIS KIND OF DISPOSITION
CHAINED TO A ROMAN SOLDIER, DEATH STARING HIM IN THE
FACE, NO LIGHT AT THE END OF HIS TUNNEL AND YET PAUL
SAID, "I AM DELIRIOUSLY HAPPY IN THE LORD JESUS CHRIST
HOW DO YOU EXPLAIN IT?

5. WELL PAUL HAD DISCOVERED SOME SECRETS. HE SAYS
IN V.12, "I HAVE LEARNED BOTH TO BE FULL AND TO BE
HUNGRY." THE WORD THERE FOR LEARN LITERALLY MEANS
"TO LEARN A SECRET." PAUL HAD LEARNED A VERY VALUABLE
SECRET. HE HAD LEARNED THE SECRET OF PERSEVERING
UNDER PRESSURE. HE HAD LEARNED HOW TO HAVE JOY IN A
JAIL. HE HAD LEARNED HOW TO "MAKE IT THROUGH THE
NIGHT."

6. PAUL HAD COME TO A POINT IN HIS LIFE WHERE HE HAL
-2-
LEARNED THE SECRET OF TURNING PROBLEMS INTO PEARLS, OBSTACLES
INTO OPPORTUNITIES, AND TROUBLE INTO TRIUMPH.
YES, PAUL WAS IN PRISON, BUT HE HAD LEARNED HOW TO TURN
HIS PRISON INTO A PALACE.

7. NOW Y ...


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