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UNFALTERING PERSEVERENCE (verse 18, Hebrews 12:11)
Joshua fought for a long time with the kings. As we read the accounts of the war it may seem short, but in reality, it took Joshua 7 years to complete the final conquest. There must have been times during these seven years of fighting that Joshua felt like quitting. He clinged on to God and endured with unfaltering perseverance.
The spiritual battle here on earth is long and can be tiring. We have to persevere and keep fighting till the return of our Lord Jesus Christ.
By perseverance the snail reached the ark. - C. H. Spurgeon
We must persevere because there is a prize awaiting us at the end of the race. We can persevere because: God has given us His power through the Holy Spirit. God has given us companions in this race.
(From Benjamin Chew's Sermon "The Final Conquest")
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Life Examples: Abraham: The Man of Endurance (Gen. 21:1-3)
Call Abraham not only a man of faith (Gal. 3:9), but a man of endurance.
The starting gun sounded when God promised Abraham a son in his old age, and Abraham "believed in the LORD" (Gen. 15:5-6). Buy a year came and went, and no child arrived.
Abraham kept running.
Two years flashed, and still no child.
Still Abraham kept running.
Despite a stumble at mid-race (see Gen. 16), Abraham kept running. For 25 years he kept running, until at last, at age 100, he and his wife, age 99, had a son (Gen. 21:1-3).
Why the long wait? Apparently, God wanted Abraham (and us!) to learn the connection between waiting, trust, and hope (Ps. 33:20). And that hope, the apostle Paul reminds us, prompts us to wait on God "with perseverence" (Rom 8:25).
-The Charles F. Stanley Life Principles Bible
THE DURABILITY TEST
Endurance is a quality that God expects us to manifest. If you go to an IKEA store, you will find somewhere in the chair department a glass box with what is called the durability test. They have a mechanism that simulates someone sitting on the chair, and they say the chair was used 10 times a day for 10 years and it’s still like new in its original shape. The furniture at IKEA was never meant to be as sturdy or as high quality as the good old teak or oak furniture that the older generation has probably been accustomed to. Let’s face it--it’s cheap quality but they want to sell it by showing how durable it is.
2 Timothy 4:7 Paul says "I have fought a good fight, I have finished [my] course, I have kept the faith."
Someone posted a very funny picture on the Internet called "The real IKEA durability test" where a dog is chewing one of those chairs and it didn’t pass the test. In our lives we will be put...
WAR HORSE: PERSEVERENCE
Last week, I watched "War Horse." It's a Steven Spielberg film about a young English boy and his horse.
The family is about to lose their farm because dad bought a horse for his son. The father bears a war injury and cannot tend the farm. He spends his last money buying this horse that was a racing horse and not a work horse.
The land owner is about to evict the family. Their only hope is if the teenager can plow a rock-filled field with his new thoroughbred so that the family can plant their crops.
The entire town gathers along the field to watch the event. They watch with pity and laughter as the boy attempts the impossible. "A team of trained horses couldn't plow that field," they say. But everyone wants the boy and his horse to pull through.
Those Little Maybe’s! (08.12.05--Character Counts!--Romans 5: 3-4)
A drought tests the metal of a man. It tests his fortitude and his faithfulness. It also tests his resourcefulness and his ingenuity.
I come from a long line of “resourceful” folks who seemed to see in every bleak and forlorn circumstance in life that little something that gives you hope. My grandfather always called it those little “maybe’s” that just might get you through the tough times if only you have the eyes to see them. “They’re everywhere!” He’d say. “But they’re never easy to see. If you don’t see them with the eyes of faith, they may not be visible at all.” That’s the kind of attitude that set my grandfather apart from other men. He just had a knack for seeing those little “maybe’s” when times got tough.
I thought of him the other day as one of those “maybe’s” snuck into my life. Locked in one of the worst droughts we’ve experienced in years, I had become very concerned for the many trees that line our valley. No Name Creek has been dry for weeks and the ground around our home is concrete hard and dusty. We badly need rain and my concern was for the beautiful beech trees that shelter our little home. I dare not try to water them as that might run the well dry. Seeing no alternative but to let things happen as they may, I resigned myself to watch and wait. That’s when a “maybe” snuck into view. The dehumidifier! Why let all that precious water go down the drain? I could take the several gallons of distilled humidity and dump it on a new tree every day. Then, just maybe, I can sustain some of the trees despite the drought.
Sometimes its the little things, the “maybe’s” that serve to shape our character the most. F. B. Meyer writes: “The supreme test of goodness is not in the greater but in the smaller incidents of our character and practice; not what we are when standing in the searchlight of public scrutiny, but when we reach the firelight flicker of our homes; not what we are when some clarion-call rings through the air, summo...