Today I finished reading Things Not Seen by Jon Bloom. The last chapter of the book has some very good reminders for pilgrims, of which Jon Bloom certainly can identify with.
Excepts from his last chapter…
Don’t give up when you feel that deep soul weariness from long battles with persistent weaknesses.
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. (2 Cor. 12:9)
Don’t give up when your long asked-and-sought-and-knocked-for prayers have not yet been answered.
And he told them [the parable of the persistent widow] to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. (Luke 18:1)
Don’t give up when the Devil’s fiery darts of doubt find flesh and make you reel.
Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day… In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one. (Eph. 6:13, 16)
Don’t give up when the fragmenting effect of multiple pressures seems relentless.
But as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: by great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities, beatings, imprisonments, riots, labors, sleepless nights, hunger… (2 Cor. 6:4–5)
Don’t give up when the field the Lord has assigned you to is hard and the harvest does not look promising.
And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. (Gal. 6:9)
Don’t give up when you labor in obscurity and you wonder how much it even matters.
Your Father who sees in secret will reward you. (Matt. 6:4)
Don’t give up when your reputation is damaged because you are trying to be faithful to Jesus.
Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. (Matt. 5:11)
Don’t give up when waiting on God seems endless.
Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. (Isa. 40:30–31)
He ends the chapter like this…
“Living by faith in “things not seen” is hard (Heb. 11:1). Jesus reminds us: “The way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are [relatively] few” (Matt. 7:14). But the way has always been hard, and you are not alone in the difficulty. You are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses who have passed this way ahead of you (Heb. 12:1). Many have suffered far more and have remained faithful. Remember them and imitate their faith (Heb. 13:7).
Above all, remember Jesus Christ (2 Tim. 2:8). Jesus knows your works (Rev. 2:2) and he understands your war (Heb. 12:3). His grace will be given to you in your time of need (Heb. 4:16), and it will be sufficient for you, even at the very worst times (2 Cor. 12:9).
So, look to Jesus (Heb. 12:2), “fight the good fight of the faith” (1 Tim. 6:12), and finish your race (2 Tim. 4:7). When you have done the will of God, you will receive what is promised: his great and eternal reward (Heb. 10:35–36). Measured by eternity, the hardships of this life will not be long, and “by your endurance you will gain your lives” (Luke 21:19). Don’t give up.”
Thank you God, that the “don’t give up” comes from you, through you, by you, and is for you!
Philippians 1:6 — the anchor of perseverance!