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1. God's Power in Your Exhaustion: Genesis Pt. 1

Instead of relying on yourself, you can look to God for his power to renew you.

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was a [a]formless and desolate emptiness, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. -Genesis 1:1-4

What causes us to trust someone? Oftentimes, it’s their tract-record: we trust financial advice from someone with a history of financial success; or, we trust a doctor who has a record of surgeries that have gone well.

The book of Genesis serves as a testimony to what God has done, inspiring us to trust and depend on him. It begins with a description of pre-existent earth as empty, chaotic and dark. But then we read, “God said, ‘Let there be light.’”

This verse is conveying that God brought light out of darkness, order out of chaos, simply with his words. Genesis then depicts God, with his words, bringing all of creation to being: the land, the sea, the plants and animals, and finally humanity. The first humans he created, Adam and Eve, live in what is called “The Garden of Eden.” In Eden we have a vision of how the world was created to be: Adam and Eve live in a blissful state of love, purpose and rest in a perfect relationship with their creator.

This flourishing comes to a halt when Adam and Eve rebel against God. They give into the temptations of what Genesis calls “the serpent”, otherwise known as Satan, and they disobey God instead of trusting him and his authority. Because of this act of rebellion, sin enters the world.

The introduction of sin means that humans are now spiritually dead: they are cut off from the source of true life, which is God. Sin also brings brokenness into the world: physical suffering and death, relational strife, natural disasters-any destruction or pain in the world is because of sin.

But God does not give up at this point. He is not caught off guard. God has a plan of restoration! He promises Adam and Eve that he will one day send someone who will defeat evil and death!

Many years later, God the Son, Jesus, came to Earth to fulfill this promise. At the creation of the world, Jesus brought light and life into the dark void of pre-creation chaos. And in coming to Earth, Jesus brought light and life into the dark world of sin and death. He is the Word of God, calling things to life! With his life, death and resurrection, Jesus came to restore his creation from the effects of sin. He came to restore his people and bring God’s life-giving power into their hearts: power that enables people to be in a relationship with God, that transforms them, that restores their brokenness!

Are you feeling discouraged or even hopeless in something you’re struggling with? Maybe it’s a fractured relationship with a friend or spouse or parent that feels like it will never heal. Maybe it’s a personal struggle with anger, self-control, or worrying, and you’re so tired of not being able to change yourself. If you resonate with this feeling of discouragement, Genesis is good news! It reminds us to stop relying on ourselves. It proclaims that God alone is the source of power.

Just as he did at creation, with his Word and his Spirit,

God can bring order out of your chaos.

He can bring light into your darkness.

He can renew every part of your life with his great power.

In whatever you’re going through, you don’t have to depend on yourself. You can seek God, trusting and depending on him and his power! Remember who he is and what he has done: he is the creator, the savior, and the restorer of us and our world.

RESPOND: Take a moment to bring to God any exhaustion you’re feeling or struggle you’re facing.

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