Some time ago I read a story of a clergyman named Jan Hus. This man was told that he would be burned at the stake for sharing his faith. Did he stop? No! He continued to share the Good News. Then he started holding his hand over a candle so that he would be accustomed to the pain before the sentence was carried out. Now that’s “holding fast…without wavering.” To him, success meant ending his life still strong in his faith.
That kind of tenacity is called staying power-the ability, courage, and willingness to hang on to what we know is “right.” It takes faith to have staying power when at times we feel all alone, taking the heat and the consequences seemingly alone. We won’t know if we have that kind of tenacity until the time arrives; but in the meantime we need to come to an unwavering conclusion, that even if no one appears to join us, we will hang on. Believing that a firm decision to persevere can compensate for a host of disadvantages.
Let US hold fast to our confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.
Hebrew 10:23 NKJV
Success seems largely a matter of hanging on when others have let go.
We need never to shout across the spaces to an absent God. He is nearer than our own soul, closer than our most secret thoughts.
The last year has felt like an emotional roller coaster. That was to be expected with all that I’ve experienced in the last eighteen months. The journey as been challenging but rewarding. However, one thing I didn’t expect was at times I would feel so far away from God. Especially since I have always felt so close to Him. Where had He gone? I continue to pray even when I can’t feel His presence. Yes, I will continue to reach out even when I feel that no one is reaching back.
Feeling the intimacy of God’s presence is a wonderful thing. But on this earth, it is most likely a fleeting experience, not a perpetual state. How I feel about something isn’t always an accurate gauge of what’s really true. When my emotions say that God is far away, I remind myself of what is true-that God is always with me, and nothing can separate me or you from His love.
Do not be far from me, for trouble is near and there is no one to help.
The ways of God are without fault. The Lord’s words are pure. He is a shield to those who trust him. Who is God? Only the Lord. Who is the Rock? Only our God. God is my protection. He makes my way free from fault.
Psalm 18:30-32 NCV
The mountains may depart and the hills disappear, but even then I will remain loyal to you. My covenant of blessing will never be broken, says the Lord, who has mercy on you.
Isaiah 54:10 NLT
Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. Matthew 14:29 NAS
Playing life’s game to the fullest requires taking risks. Without risk, life has little emotion, little that can be counted exhilarating or fulfilling.
- To cry risk appearing sentimental.
- To laugh risk appearing the fool.
- To reach out for another is to risk involvement.
- To expose feelings is to risk exposing one’s true self.
- To love is to risk not being loved in return.
- To hope is to risk despair.
- To try is to risk failure.
- To place ideas and dreams before a crowd is to risk ridicule.
Yet the person who risks nothing does nothing, has nothing, and ultimately becomes nothing. I refuse to stay in the boat. For me its time to leave the shore and go out into Deep waters. There is a great catch out there waiting .
“Unless a person has the courage to lose sight of the shore, they will never discover new oceans.”
Then David and the people that were with him lifted up their voice and wept, until they had no more power to weep. And David’s two wives were taken captives…. And David was greatly distressed; for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God. ( 1 Samuel 30:4-6)
Most people think of David as the shepherd boy who slew Goliath. Also they remember Bathsheba. Many times David was between a rock and a hard place. He was between the devil and the deep blue sea. He was in a bad spot. ” But David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.” My friend there are times in our lives when the circumstances will not produce any joy . There are times when we will find ourselves in dark places, like David. We look about and the situation seems hopeless. What should we do? Be discouraged? Give up? Say we are through? Friend, when we are children of God, we too must encourage ourselves. He wants to make Himself real to US. It was during times like these that David wrote some of his most helpful psalms.
“The Lord is good……Let the redeemed of the Lord say so.”