Summary: How not to lose heart in the day of adversity and severe challenge--to possess spiritual stamina
28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.
29 He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
HAVE YOU EVER FAINTED? I did for the first time about two years ago at church dinner.
• Frank Olds
Many of us have faced the problem of spiritually fainting
as we labor, fight, and enter the heat of the battle for the Lord.
Proverbs 24:10: “If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small.”
The Hebrew for “faint” here literally means, to become feeble, idle, or lazy; to lack stamina. In some translations it is rendered, “to be disheartened, to falter, to lose heart.”
In I Samuel 30:21, we are told that 200 of David’s men were so faint, “they could not follow David.”
There are many professing Christians that get so weak that they cannot seem to remain consistent in their walk with Christ. They lack spiritual stamina!
In II Corinthians 4:15,16, Paul writes, “For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God. For which cause we faint not, but though our outward man may perish, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.”
Illus.: “To Build a Bridge”
The Brooklyn Bridge is truly a miracle bridge. In 1863, a creative engineer named John Roebling was inspired by an idea for this spectacular span. Bridge-building experts throughout the world told him it was a crazy idea and that he should forget it. It couldn’t be done. But Roebling wouldn’t forget it. It was his dream. So he convinced his son, Washington, who was a young up-and-coming engineer, that the bridge could be built. So the two of them developed a plan of attack. With unharnessed excitement and inspiration, they hired their crew and began to build their dream bridge.
The project was only a few months under construction when a tragic accident took the life of John Roebling and severely injured his son, Washington. He was left with permanent brain damage and was unable to talk or walk. Everyone felt that the project would be scrapped, but even though Washington couldn’t speak or walk, his mind was as sharp as ever. And he still had a burning desire to complete the bridge. An idea hit him in his hospital bed and he developed a code for communication. All he could move was one finger, so he touched the arm of his wife with that finger, tapping out a code to communicate to her what to tell the engineers who were building the bridge. For 13 years, Washington tapped out his instruction with his finger until the spectaculor Brooklyn Bridge was finally completed.
Lord, give us that kind of determination, that kind of stamina.
WHEN A CHRISTIAN FAINTS, AT LEAST 3 THINGS TAKE PLACE:
1. They become spiritually weak
• least little thing detours them
• become as limp as a dish rag
• lose control of their bodily functions
2. There is darkness. If you want to hear some of the most gloomy, pessimistic, negative things in the world, hang around someone who is in a state of “spiritual fainting.”
A wise man once said, “We become what we think about.” The Bible says, “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.”
Illus.: “The Whole World Stinks”
One Sunday afternoon, a cranky grandfather was visiting his family. As he lay down to take a nap, his grandson decided to have a little fun by putting limburger cheese on his grandpa’s mustache. Soon grandpa awok with a snort and charged out of the bedroom saying, “This room stinks!” Through the house he went, finding every room smelling the same. Desperately he made his way outside only to find that the “whole world stinks!”
So it is when we fill our minds with negativism. Everything we experience and everybody we encounter will carry the scent we hold in our mind.
One more thing takes place when a Christian faints.
3. There is a losing touch with reality. They go off into their own little world. Don’t ask them any important questions. They can’t help you. In fact, they can’t even help themselves.
SOME CAUSES OF FAINTING
Medically speaking, fainting occurs when not enough oxygen gets to the brain. But what bring this upon? Actually, many, many things can cause one to pass out. Here are a few common ones.