On Perseverance and Giving Up

[435 words] Everyone gets tired from time to time. Often tiredness leads to exhaustion. When exhaustion is full and there’s still work to be done, it can lead to burnout. With burnout comes an increased distance from job or family responsibilities, negativity, cynicism, and an abiding feeling of needful change. The thought is that if…

Just Don’t Quit

[140 words] At any given moment in the life of the church, there are those teetering on the border of departure. But if you quit, will you be happier? Will your children thereby be improved? Will those who know and love you be encouraged? And, will the angels in Heaven weep or rejoice? There is…

Abraham’s Early Mornings

[363 words] I am not really a morning person. I loathe early alarms. Most days, it takes me a while to really get going. If, however, the day promises something out of the ordinary and pleasant, like the beginning of a vacation, I’ve been known to wake up before the alarm clock goes off. But…

A Different Spirit

[403 words] At Kadesh Israel caught a terminal case of “the grasshopper complex” from the ten faithless spies. The reports of giants and walled cities blinded them to the greatness of God and deafened them to His promises. What a sad day in Israel’s history! Moses wrote, “we were like grasshoppers in our own sight,…

The Endurance Test

[68 words] 1. “He that endureth to the end shall be saved.” (Matthew 10:22) 2. “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” (Galatians 6:9) 3. “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that…

If You Stand Firm

[287 words] Paul was worried about the brethren in Thessalonica. He barely had any time with them before circumstances have driven him from the city. Paul had wanted to return to them but Satan had kept that from happening. All he really wanted to know was ‘were they faithful”? Finally, when he receives the news…

Stand Fast

[415 words] According to the American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms, the phrase “stand fast” means, “to be firm or unyielding.” It also reveals that: “This idiom, dating from the early 1600s, originally was applied to an army holding its territory against the enemy.” The phrase “stand fast” occurs in our English Bibles, as well. Actually…

Jesus Never Quit!

[364 words] Jesus did not quit meeting with His disciples because Judas was a thief, nor because Peter was fickle at times. He didn’t quit preaching and living right because some of His brethren were unforgiving and unkind. He did not quit His post of leadership because He had in His presence the adulterous woman,…

Thorns in the Flesh

[460 words] We all have them. Those nagging thorns in the flesh. They come in different levels of severity, but they do come. Perhaps they are seen in the process of aging. We don’t like to deal with the changes our bodies and minds go through, but like it or not, it is a part…

Enemies Surrounding Me

[177 words] Many of the psalms David wrote referred to his many enemies surrounding him. In Psalm 57, he says, “My soul is among lions; I lie among the sons of men, Who are set on fire, Whose teeth are spears and arrows, And their tongue a sharp sword” (v.4).  Despite his adversaries, David was…

Why Calamities?

[381 words] Webster’s dictionary defines calamity as: “a disastrous event marked by great loss and lasting distress and suffering.” Without a doubt 2020 could be deemed the year of calamities. When pandemics, hurricanes, or wildfires hit, the question is asked by some: “Why did God allow it to happen?” I don’t claim to have all…

Moving Past It

[229 words] Do you have one experience in life that you can’t shake from your memory? Try as you might to put it behind you, it won’t go! Perhaps you have more than one. In the long ago, there was a man name Esau who thought so little of his “birthright” that for an occasion…

What Do You Do When Things Go Bad?

[523 words] Life is full of ups and downs. If we made a list of all of the positive things in our life, all of the blessings, that list would almost certainly far exceed a similar list of all of the negative things in our life. Despite that fact, we tend to focus more on…

The Ocean Waves of Life!

[273 words] Have you ever stood in the ocean when the waves are rolling in? If you are not prepared and standing with your feet firmly set, the waves can easily knock you down. The Bible uses this idea of “standing firm” and “holding fast” when describing how we need to be living our lives.…

Are You in it for the Long Haul?

[458 words] A very interesting word occurs in a familiar Bible passage that helps us to understand something of our Christian lives upon the earth. The passage is Heb. 12:1-2 and the word translated “race.” “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight,…

Perseverance and Hope for the Future

[234 words] “And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband” (Revelation 21:2). In so many ways, the very end of the Bible is a mirror-image of its beginning. Because of sin, man in Genesis is separated from God’s presence and…

Finishing Well

[227 words] Wouldn’t you love to face eternity with confidence? You can! “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the…

Weariness!

[371 words] Working hard all day at a physical activity leads to a tiredness we can all relate to. We all know the relief of being able to finally sit down and rest. The great thing about physical tiredness is that usually after a time of rest we feel better and are able to return…

Trials

[244 words] “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. If you are insulted for the name…

Don’t Quit

[192 words] When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,when the road you’re trudging seems all up hill,when the funds are low and the debts are high,and you want to smile, but you have to sigh,when care is pressing you down a bit,rest, if you must—but don’t you quit. Life is queer with its twists…

Never Die Easy!

[640 words] Walter Payton ranks second on the National Football League’s list of all-time leaders in rushing yards. Through 13 seasons as a Chicago Bear Payton was tackled and knocked down thousands of times. He built an extraordinary career, not by getting knocked down, but by not staying down! He was knocked down a final…

Don’t Ever Quit!

[511 words] Most people regard a quitter as one of the most despicable characters on earth. We admire a person who, against all odds, keeps on struggling till the contest is ended; who keeps on running till he finishes the race, even if he has no chance of winning. We applaud the man who crawls…

Whatever It Takes

[232 words] Someone once noted that there are two kinds of people in this world: those who say “whatever” and those who say, “whatever it takes.” “Whatever” is the response of the shrug. It is a “who cares?” attitude, one of indifference and apathy. “Whatever it takes” is the response of the committed. It is…

His Strength, or Your Safety?

[222 words] “But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. And I was delivered from the lions mouth” (2 Tim. 4:17). We sing the song: “…though none go with me, I still will follow.” But…

A Little Resolve

[562 words] “But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the king’s food, or with the wine that he drank” (Daniel 1:19-20). All the students in the Cape and Jackson area have officially begun the 2014-15 school year. Each year as this time period comes I can’t help but think about my time…

Dog Daze

[426 words] When I was a small boy in North Georgia I used to hear the older folks speak of “Dog Days.” I never quite understood what that meant but I got the idea it meant I couldn’t go swimming for fear of catching a fever or something worse. I suppose every part of the…

Taking the Heat

[93 words] In the early 1970’s the firefighters of Fairfax County, Virginia, received new helmets. They were sharp looking, colorful, size-adjustable, made of high-impact plastic, and scuff-resistant. There was only one problem with the helmets: when they were worn near the heat of a fire, they melted. This, of course, made them useless to firefighters;…

Courage

[244 words] In the year 404 a monk by the name Telemachus traveled to Rome and was shocked beyond measure at the cruelty of the gladiatorial contests. Telemachus leaped over the railing of the Coliseum and tried to stop the gladiator s from hacking themselves to pieces by repeated cries of “In the name of…

It’s a Bad World, But…

[141 words] A third century man nearing death wrote to a friend: “It’s a bad world, an incredibly bad world but I have discovered in the midst of it a quiet and holy people who have learned a great secret. They have found a joy which is a thousand times better than any pleasure of…

Your Jericho

[426 words] “By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days” (Hebrews 11:30). Forty years before, twelve spies were sent on a reconnaissance mission to see what the land of Canaan was like. The spies returned with reports of a land flowing with milk and honey, but a…

How to Love Someone You Can’t Stand

[178 words] Jesus called for His disciple to “Love one another as I have loved you.” This call is still in effect today. The question that immediately comes to mind is, “Does this apply to people who seem to be unlovable?” What about obnoxious, crude, blasphemous or cruel people we meet and interact with? How…

Fresh Fish for Sale Today

[131 words] A man starting in the fish business hung out a sign that read, “Fresh Fish for Sale Today” and invited his friends to the opening. They all congratulated him on his enterprise, but one suggested that his sign might be improved. He said, “Why the word ‘Today?’ Of course it’s today, not yesterday…

Standing With Jesus 

  [340 words] Certainly you have heard about the shooting that took place this past week at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon. Nine people were killed. Several more were injured.  There are conflicting reports about this, but some outlets are reporting that the shooter asked his victims if they were religious or not (if…

The Keys to Overcoming the World

  [485 words] In Revelation, there is a lot of figurative language and many difficult symbols. Because of that we often avoid reading the book. But in it are some great Bible helps. One of them is found in chapter 12, where we learn how Christians are to overcome the world. To preface what is…

Portraits of Endurance

  [579 words] Barton W. Stone was born in 1772. In his autobiography he wrote, “My father, John Stone, died when I was very young. I have no recollection of him in life.” He grew up without his father, but he never used his loss as an excuse to rebel or quit. When soldiers returned…

The Lord is My Portion

  [272 words] Jeremiah is called “the weeping prophet.” He did indeed share the words of God in a very sad and overwhelming time. We can learn from the words of Jeremiah, in Lamentations, about our God and our hope in Him, so that we can have the faith and courage to live faithfully through…

Don’t Quit

  [321 words] Many times, we encounter challenges that make us rethink our commitment to Christ and the church. When we consider quitting or lessening our relationship with Christ and the church let’s: Remember why we started (cf. Revelation 2:5). The church at Ephesus left their first love. Go back and remember why we chose…

The Answer is Blowing In The Wind

  [263 words] Any runner, cyclist, or truck driver will have experienced this phenomenon. When you are going into a headwind, you notice it. The wind buffets your efforts, you feel every moment of discomfort and pushback. However, when you go back in the other direction when the wind is at your back, you don’t…

A Rough Row to Hoe

[304 words] The Christian life has been described as “headed into a storm, in a storm, or coming out of a storm.” The question for the believer is not if trials will come, but what to do when they do come. The apostle Paul said that “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of…

‘I’ Exam: Focus On Christ

[341 words] Where is your focus? This is a question each Christian must answer for himself. Christianity is not something that we do for just a little while. It is a way of life that must be lived everyday. Neither is it like a coat that we put on and take off with the changing…