Perseverance; April 23, 2020

Hebrews 12:3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

I have long liked the first half of Hebrews 12 and have written and spoken on it many times. However, though this is underlined in my Bible, in both languages, I don’t think I’ve ever written on this verse. Frankly, growing weary and losing heart is an issue for many at this point, particularly with all that is going on about COVID-19. We tend to think of the lives of saints as being filled with dramatic encounters, when most of it is just a daily slog. Actually, we also often fail to realize that we are the “saints” the Bible talks about! That provides the devil with an opportunity to to discourage us, to make us think we’re never going to make it over the next mountain, when in retrospect we often realize that “mountain” was just a bump in the road! We’re back to the “perseverance” mentioned in the first verse of this chapter. In just about everything in life, the answer is Jesus. Many years ago I heard someone say, “The answer is Jesus. Now, what was your problem?” That is very much to the point, because He is both our example and our reward, and every good thing we have from God we have in Him and through Him. We tend to see that Jesus is the answer for the world’s problems, just as the song says, (“Jesus is the answer for the world today…”) but we fail to see that He is also the answer for every one of our problems, no matter how mundane.

I’m in the middle of training in this, yet again. I’ve discovered that a big part of perseverance is going through the same lessons again and again, each time learning them just a little better. I’m reminded of people who have to take their driving test repeatedly before they get their license. Right now I’m yet again having my pride ground down, getting ready to put our Sunday services live on the Internet. I would be satisfied with just putting them on YouTube, but our younger daughter talked about the huge difference, for her, between her current church using Facebook Live and YouTube. I’m used to being the “go-to tech guy,” and feeling overwhelmed is very uncomfortable indeed. The devil is doing all he can to get me to throw it all away, but God is already doing good things in spite of me, so I must indeed not “grow weary and lose heart.” I have seen various good things the Lord has done through the COVID business for others, and I’ve got to be open and available for Him to do good things in me and in this church as well.

Father, thank You for the current trial. I just about lost it last night, which shows my prideful rigidity. Thank You for getting me past that, and for my loving wife who was such a help to me yet again. Thank You for the opportunity to minister, in a completely different way. That was very healing, as being used by You always is. Help me continue to grow and not lose heart, so that Your purposes may indeed be accomplished on Your schedule for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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