Tag Archives: endurance

I Choose Joy

Sleep is heavy in my eyes this morning, Father, despite the cold water in my face. Help me to hear Your words for me this day.

Revelation 1:9 (<<click green)

If I were to ask anyone who has read the New Testament to any degree to give me a description of the Apostle John, I doubt anyone would describe him as dour, grumpy or melancholy. He most certainly would not be labeled with an Eeyore personality.

Even when I read today’s passage, Lord, I don’t see discouragement or anxiety – there is no doom and gloom mentality. Though I see the words “suffering” and “endurance” and “exiled”, in my mind’s eye I see a man of joy, determination, and love. The “disciple who Jesus loved” is much like his Master. His attitude toward life remains consistent regardless of his circumstances.

John was no more perfect that I am but at this point in his life – and he was probably in his 90’s – he had experienced enough of the ups and downs of life that there is no pretense. He is who he is – a man at peace with himself, his world and his Lord.

I pray, Lord, that I am like John – at least a good part of the time. I have never been imprisoned (Acts 4) or placed in exile but we all have our trials. I do lose my cool on occasion. I ponder my lot in life and wonder if it will ever change. Overall, I am content with wherever I find myself. But one thing I most definitely can attest to – this joy is not a natural response to my life and circumstances. My joy – as John’s – is found in my relationship with You, Lord.

The chorus of an old hymn comes to mind,

There is joy, joy
Joy in serving Jesus.
Joy that throbs within my heart

Every moment, every hour
As I draw upon His power
There is joy, joy
Joy that never shall depart.

May I ever draw upon Your power, Lord. Amen.

June 13th, Tues, 6:34 am

Endurance

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Father, thank You for your loving patience. You’ve helped me conquer so many things in my life but You well know that I am far from perfect. Every time something comes up that needs to be addressed, may I yield to You. Help me to lay it at Your feet – it does me no good to ignore the need for Your touch and to think I can take care of it on my own. This day I submit to Your continued Lordship over my life. Amen – so be it.

Hebrews 12:2-4 (<<click here)

Endurance… Lord, Your life amongst us was truly a living example of endurance. But even with that before us, many of us struggle. It just seems so much easier to give up and throw in the towel when the going gets tough.

Many things in life bring us great joy and fulfillment – marriage, family, kids, work, church, homes, yards and this list goes on. But they can also bring us great heartache, stress and fatigue. So many things are worth our investments of time and energy. We just have to endure.

Karen and I have spent this last couple of days edging around flower beds and mulching. It is a lot of hard work! It’s hot. It’s dirty. Our bodies have protested quite a bit. It’s not been easy but it has been well worth the effort!

This summer we will celebrate 30 years of wedded bliss. Has it always been easy? No. Has it ever crossed our minds to give up? Maybe. But we didn’t and, oh, my, it has surely been well worth the effort!

I have walked with the Lord now for most of my life. I have had many challenges and struggles. I have failed and fallen, more times than I can recall. But, Lord, You have been rock solid. You’ve never given up on me. You stood with me through thick and thin. You have called me to endure. I have, only because of You, and it has truly been worth it all. Thank You, Lord, for Your loving patience. You are my inspiration. Praise Your Holy Name!

June 1st, Wed, 6:20 am