How to Grow Strong in Your Faith

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These should be the smallest of your headings. @style heading 4 */ h4{ /*@editable*/color:#808080 !important; display:block; /*@editable*/font-family:Helvetica; /*@editable*/font-size:16px; /*@editable*/font-style:normal; /*@editable*/font-weight:bold; /*@editable*/line-height:125%; /*@editable*/letter-spacing:normal; margin:0; /*@editable*/text-align:left; } /* @tab Preheader @section preheader style @tip Set the background color and borders for your email’s preheader area. */ #templatePreheader{ /*@editable*/background-color:#FFFFFF; /*@editable*/border-top:0; /*@editable*/border-bottom:0; } /* @tab Preheader @section preheader text @tip Set the styling for your email’s preheader text. Choose a size and color that is easy to read. */ .preheaderContainer .mcnTextContent,.preheaderContainer .mcnTextContent p{ /*@editable*/color:#606060; /*@editable*/font-family:Helvetica; /*@editable*/font-size:11px; /*@editable*/line-height:125%; /*@editable*/text-align:left; } /* @tab Preheader @section preheader link @tip Set the styling for your email’s header links. Choose a color that helps them stand out from your text. */ .preheaderContainer .mcnTextContent a{ /*@editable*/color:#606060; /*@editable*/font-weight:normal; /*@editable*/text-decoration:underline; } /* @tab Header @section header style @tip Set the background color and borders for your email’s header area. */ #templateHeader{ /*@editable*/background-color:#FFFFFF; /*@editable*/border-top:0; /*@editable*/border-bottom:0; } /* @tab Header @section header text @tip Set the styling for your email’s header text. 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Choose a color that helps them stand out from your text. */ .headerContainer .mcnTextContent a{ /*@editable*/color:#6DC6DD; /*@editable*/font-weight:normal; /*@editable*/text-decoration:underline; } /* @tab Body @section body style @tip Set the background color and borders for your email’s body area. */ #templateBody{ /*@editable*/background-color:#FFFFFF; /*@editable*/border-top:0; /*@editable*/border-bottom:0; } /* @tab Body @section body style @tip Set the background color and borders for your email’s body area. */ #templateSidebar{ /*@editable*/border-left:0; } /* @tab Body @section body text @tip Set the styling for your email’s body text. Choose a size and color that is easy to read. */ .bodyContainer .mcnTextContent,.bodyContainer .mcnTextContent p{ /*@editable*/color:#606060; /*@editable*/font-family:Helvetica; /*@editable*/font-size:15px; /*@editable*/line-height:150%; /*@editable*/text-align:left; } /* @tab Body @section body link @tip Set the styling for your email’s body links. Choose a color that helps them stand out from your text. */ .bodyContainer .mcnTextContent a{ /*@editable*/color:#6DC6DD; /*@editable*/font-weight:normal; /*@editable*/text-decoration:underline; } /* @tab Sidebar @section sidebar style @tip Set the background color and borders for your email’s sidebar area. */ #templateSidebar{ /*@editable*/background-color:#FFFFFF; } /* @tab Sidebar @section sidebar style @tip Set the background color and borders for your email’s sidebar area. */ #templateSidebarInner{ /*@editable*/border-left:0; } /* @tab Sidebar @section sidebar text @tip Set the styling for your email’s sidebar text. Choose a size and color that is easy to read. */ .sidebarContainer .mcnTextContent,.sidebarContainer .mcnTextContent p{ /*@editable*/color:#606060; /*@editable*/font-family:Helvetica; /*@editable*/font-size:13px; /*@editable*/line-height:125%; /*@editable*/text-align:left; } /* @tab Sidebar @section sidebar link @tip Set the styling for your email’s sidebar links. Choose a color that helps them stand out from your text. */ .sidebarContainer .mcnTextContent a{ /*@editable*/color:#6DC6DD; /*@editable*/font-weight:normal; /*@editable*/text-decoration:underline; } /* @tab Footer @section footer style @tip Set the background color and borders for your email’s footer area. */ #templateFooter{ /*@editable*/background-color:#FFFFFF; /*@editable*/border-top:0; /*@editable*/border-bottom:0; } /* @tab Footer @section footer text @tip Set the styling for your email’s footer text. 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Choose a color that helps them stand out from your text. */ .footerContainer .mcnTextContent a{ /*@editable*/color:#606060; /*@editable*/font-weight:normal; /*@editable*/text-decoration:underline; } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ body,table,td,p,a,li,blockquote{ -webkit-text-size-adjust:none !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ body{ width:100% !important; min-width:100% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ td[id=bodyCell]{ padding:10px !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ table[class=mcnTextContentContainer]{ width:100% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ table[class=mcnBoxedTextContentContainer]{ width:100% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ table[class=mcpreview-image-uploader]{ width:100% !important; display:none !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ img[class=mcnImage]{ width:100% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ tr[class=hide]{ display:none !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ table[class=mcnImageGroupContentContainer]{ width:100% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ td[class=mcnImageGroupContent]{ padding:9px !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ td[class=mcnImageGroupBlockInner]{ padding-bottom:0 !important; padding-top:0 !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ tbody[class=mcnImageGroupBlockOuter]{ padding-bottom:9px !important; padding-top:9px !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ table[class=mcnCaptionTopContent],table[class=mcnCaptionBottomContent]{ width:100% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ table[class=mcnCaptionLeftTextContentContainer],table[class=mcnCaptionRightTextContentContainer],table[class=mcnCaptionLeftImageContentContainer],table[class=mcnCaptionRightImageContentContainer],table[class=mcnImageCardLeftTextContentContainer],table[class=mcnImageCardRightTextContentContainer]{ width:100% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ td[class=mcnImageCardLeftImageContent],td[class=mcnImageCardRightImageContent]{ padding-right:18px !important; padding-left:18px !important; padding-bottom:0 !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ td[class=mcnImageCardBottomImageContent]{ padding-bottom:9px !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ td[class=mcnImageCardTopImageContent]{ padding-top:18px !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ table[class=mcnCaptionLeftContentOuter] td[class=mcnTextContent],table[class=mcnCaptionRightContentOuter] td[class=mcnTextContent]{ padding-top:9px !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ td[class=mcnCaptionBlockInner] table[class=mcnCaptionTopContent]:last-child td[class=mcnTextContent]{ padding-top:18px !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ td[class=mcnBoxedTextContentColumn]{ padding-left:18px !important; padding-right:18px !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ td[class=sectionContainer]{ display:block !important; max-width:728px !important; width:100% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ td[class=mcnTextContent]{ padding-right:18px !important; padding-left:18px !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ /* @tab Mobile Styles @section template width @tip Make the template fluid for portrait or landscape view adaptability. If a fluid layout doesn’t work for you, set the width to 300px instead. */ table[id=templateContainer],table[id=templatePreheader],table[id=templateHeader],table[id=templateBody],table[id=templateBodyInner],table[id=templateSidebar],table[id=templateSidebarInner],table[id=templateFooter]{ /*@tab Mobile Styles @section template width @tip Make the template fluid for portrait or landscape view adaptability. If a fluid layout doesn’t work for you, set the width to 300px instead.*/max-width:728px !important; /*@editable*/width:100% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ /* @tab Mobile Styles @section heading 1 @tip Make the first-level headings larger in size for better readability on small screens. */ h1{ /*@editable*/font-size:24px !important; /*@editable*/line-height:125% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ /* @tab Mobile Styles @section heading 2 @tip Make the second-level headings larger in size for better readability on small screens. */ h2{ /*@editable*/font-size:20px !important; /*@editable*/line-height:125% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ /* @tab Mobile Styles @section heading 3 @tip Make the third-level headings larger in size for better readability on small screens. */ h3{ /*@editable*/font-size:18px !important; /*@editable*/line-height:125% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ /* @tab Mobile Styles @section heading 4 @tip Make the fourth-level headings larger in size for better readability on small screens. */ h4{ /*@editable*/font-size:16px !important; /*@editable*/line-height:125% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ /* @tab Mobile Styles @section Boxed Text @tip Make the boxed text larger in size for better readability on small screens. 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You can hide it to save space. */ table[id=templatePreheader]{ /*@editable*/display:block !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ /* @tab Mobile Styles @section Preheader Text @tip Make the preheader text larger in size for better readability on small screens. */ td[class=preheaderContainer] td[class=mcnTextContent],td[class=preheaderContainer] td[class=mcnTextContent] p{ /*@editable*/font-size:14px !important; /*@editable*/line-height:115% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ /* @tab Mobile Styles @section Header Text @tip Make the header text larger in size for better readability on small screens. */ td[class=headerContainer] td[class=mcnTextContent],td[class=headerContainer] td[class=mcnTextContent] p{ /*@editable*/font-size:18px !important; /*@editable*/line-height:125% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ /* @tab Mobile Styles @section Body Text @tip Make the body text larger in size for better readability on small screens. We recommend a font size of at least 16px. */ td[class=bodyContainer] td[class=mcnTextContent],td[class=bodyContainer] td[class=mcnTextContent] p{ /*@editable*/font-size:18px !important; /*@editable*/line-height:125% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ /* @tab Mobile Styles @section Sidebar Text @tip Make the sidebar text larger in size for better readability on small screens. We recommend a font size of at least 16px. */ td[class=sidebarContainer] td[class=mcnTextContent],td[class=sidebarContainer] td[class=mcnTextContent] p{ /*@editable*/font-size:18px !important; /*@editable*/line-height:125% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ table[id=templateSidebar]{ border-left:0 !important; border-right:0 !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ table[id=templateSidebarInner]{ border-left:0 !important; border-right:0 !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ /* @tab Mobile Styles @section footer text @tip Make the body content text larger in size for better readability on small screens. */ td[class=footerContainer] td[class=mcnTextContent],td[class=footerContainer] td[class=mcnTextContent] p{ /*@editable*/font-size:14px !important; /*@editable*/line-height:115% !important; } } @media only screen and (max-width: 480px){ td[class=footerContainer] a[class=utilityLink]{ display:block !important; } td[class=hide]{ display:none !important; } }

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How to Grow Strong in Your Faith

by Mark Altrogge

In Romans 4, Paul tells us Abraham “grew strong in his faith” and urges us to walk in Abraham’s footsteps. To believe like he believed. How do we do this? In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, “So shall your offspring be.” He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb. No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised. (Romans 4:18–21) Look to God’s promise not your circumstances. In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations (18) Abraham’s situation looked bleak. God promised him multitudes of descendants, but the only problem was he was well past child producing. “He considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old).” He also considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb. Not only was Abraham almost 100 years old, but Sarah his wife was very old, and she had never been able to have children her whole life. How are they going to have children? If Abraham had based his hope on his circumstances he would have given up. But In hope he believed against hope—God’s promise gave him hope in his hopeless situation. He put his hope in God’s promise, not his circumstances. We may feel hopelessly unrighteous. We may feel like God could never forgive us for the sins we have committed, that he would never accept us. But we must not look at ourselves, just like Abraham didn’t look at himself, but like Abraham, we must believe God’s promise of grace. He counts me righteous in Christ! Our teenager may seem hopelessly lost. Our finances may be out of control. We may lack direction for our lives. Our marriage might be frustrating or our church might be a mess. Look to Jesus Christ! Don’t look to yourself. Look to the promise of the gospel—everyone who believes in him shall be saved. Look to his promises to draw near to those who draw near to him. Promises to hear and answer our prayers.
 
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Give glory to God No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised. (20–21) Abraham strengthened his faith. Here’s how: “He grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God.” Begin to give glory to God—start thanking and praising him for his every promise. Thank him for saving you and declaring you righteous in him. He has promised to be with us when we pass through the waters and walk through fire. He has promised to never leave us nor forsake us. He has promised that nothing will be able to separate us from his love. He has promised to give us everything we truly need to glorify him. He has promised that we can do all things he requires through Christ who loves us. Praise him for these things! We can look to our circumstances—it may not LOOK like God is being faithful. It may not FEEL like God is with us in these waters. It may FEEL like he has abandoned or forsaken us. We may not SENSE his love. But WE MUST NOT WAVER CONCERNING THE PROMISE OF GOD! Rather, we grow strong in our faith as we GIVE GLORY TO GOD, as we are fully convinced that God is able to do what he had promised. In Ps 43 the Psalmist says “Why are you cast down O my soul? Hope in God for I shall yet praise him.” Keep thanking God, keep praising him in faith in the midst of your hard times. Say, “Jesus thank you that you are with me. Thank you have promised that your steadfast love never ceases. Praise you that your mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning. Great is your faithfulness.” Growing stronger in our faith is not complicated. Look to God’s promise and glorify him. So, what are you going to believe today—God’s word or your circumstances? God’s promises or your feelings? God’s bedrock pledge of faithfulness or your wavering emotions? Walk in the footsteps of Abraham and strengthen your faith. Mark Altrogge has been senior pastor of Sovereign Grace Church of Indiana, Pennsylvania, since 1982. He has written hundreds of songs for worship, including “I Stand in Awe” and “I’m Forever Grateful.” Mark and his wife, Kristi, have four sons and one daughter. Find out more on his blog, The Blazing Center.

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