Beloved Saints of God
Greetings in the Lord’s Name. James says, “For we all stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to bridle (control) the whole body as well.” James 3:2
At the beginning of the week, we drew our illustrations from a few who have made it big in their lives simply because they didn’t give up or give in to pressures that were designed to discourage and destroy their efforts. This leads me to what so many times I have heard people say: “If at first you don’t succeed, try again.” Since our previous devotional, I’ve been pondering and thinking about it all: Don’t give up, that is.
When we look at Gates or Jay-Z or others like them, theirs could have been the end of the story. Theirs could have been classic stories of failure! Now, I draw on these illustrations as a reminder to us all, myself included that even the most successful people fail and do or, will fail. And do you know what? Interestingly, some of us may fail many times until we get it right. That is, if we don’t give up. To this the Bible says: “For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises again,…” Proverbs 24:16.
The Bible, truthful as it is, recognizes that as humans we all fail. More often than not, the great or more notable saints of the Bible failed many times. but even so they all had one thing in common—they never gave up. Many of these patriarchs Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, failed often but because they never quit, they became the patriarchs. So were countless others in the Bible including Moses and Aaron and their sister Miriam, Kings David and Solomon. And if you fast forward into the New Testament, many Apostles who had direct contact with Jesus Christ, who touched Him, ate with Him, heard Him and who saw who He really was were, surprisingly, less than consistent in their faith until they were restored by Christ and or filled with the presence of the Holy Spirit. Apostles like Peter, Thomas, Paul come to mind; they were all guilty of various sins but never gave up!
If you don’t walk, you won’t trip and fall. If you don’t open your mouth, words won’t be heard from you. My point is that the people who rarely fail are usually the ones who never do anything. A physical education teacher once said in school that as students, if we don’t fail while practicing our soccer game then we are not learning enough to be true champions. So then, how should we deal with failure in our lives?
I believe though that there are many approaches. But first of all as Christians, if we trust in the Lord Jesus Christ and are very aware that we share the very nature of Jesus Christ we could end this discussion right here! Our loser days are over! But it doesn’t end here. Why? Just because we still have a life to live and the Bible tells us that we are simply passing thought this world. The Bible also says that as such, this life is a testing ground that will determine the level of joy and true happiness that we will have. In addition, it will determine how we will be blessed when we are living in eternity with God. This is the first hurdle we need to cross: saved and trusting in God. It is essential and will dictate our demeanour to any situation in our lives. Paul said in Philippians 4:11 “I’ve learnt in whatever state I am to be content.” Contentment is not about material things or money. TBC.
Proposed prayer: “Dear Lord, Your Word is so true and powerful and I admit this, “For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises again.” Please help me to be persistent in focusing on, and trusting You in order to fulfill the plans and purposes that You have for me. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.”
May your weekend be rich in all ways.