by Pastor Mark Jordan
“I am so pleased that you have continued on in this with us, believing and proclaiming God’s Message, from the day you heard it right up to the present. There has never been the slightest doubt in my mind that the God who started this great work in you would keep at it and bring it to a flourishing finish on the very day Christ Jesus appears.” (Philippians 1:4-5, MSG)
Yesterday we explored keeping the spirit of Thanksgiving alive during the literal and metaphorical dog days of summer. We can find it easy during the holiday season when everything surrounding us points to the most wonderful time of the year. That isn’t the world we live in year-round, though, so we need some prompting to stay in the posture of thanksgiving, even when it’s tough. In yesterday’s daily water, we pointed at prayer. Today we see power in perseverance.
Paul wrote his letter to the Philippians while he was imprisoned. He wasn’t sure what his future held, but he knew who held his future! That formed his joy, even when his immediate surroundings were bleak. He praised those in the church for not giving up on him. His imprisonment could have given people “the out” they were looking for to move on from the Jesus movement. Paul promised that their perseverance would be rewarded because they not only stuck with him, but they stuck with Jesus when things got tough.
Have you faced a time when you just wanted to leave and go to greener pastures? God honors perseverance, and will see a flourishing finish to that which he began. Don’t give up. Keep at it. Look for ways to serve God by serving others, even when it’s hard.
Prayer: Dear Lord, I ask for your power of perseverance to keep me going when the going gets tough. I want to see the good work you began in me come to completion in a flourishing finish, and know I must stick with you forever. This is possible in Jesus’ name, so it is in the same that I pray. Amen.