"Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord."
1 Corinthians 15:58
It is so easy to become discouraged and to believe our toil for the Lord is in vain at times. It is a part of life. We must learn to persevere and not to become discouraged. The best way I know how to do so is to go directly to the Word of God for encouragement. It takes effort and discipline, but myself and others have suffered the consequences when I have failed to do so. It is the only way I know how to become steadfast in my faith, not allowing the father of lies to deceive me. I know I must pull away from all the noise and clamor of this world to gain a Biblical perspective to become immovable when my faith is tested. His Word and Presence guides me into eternal truth which enables me to always abound in the work of the Lord whether I am with clients, Walmart, dining in restaurants, or biking with friends etc. We are not to compartmentalize our faith for Sunday mornings and Bible studies. It is a way of life.
Many times I get discouraged when I focus on the external circumstances I can see and hear. Unfortunately it causes me to believe briefly that circumstances reveal reality. That is true in the physical realm, but not the spiritual realm. It is the opposite. We must believe what we don’t see. That is what faith is. Hebrews 11:1-3 tells us:
"Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the men of old gained approval. By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the Word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible. Hebrews 11:5-6
If you read on in Hebrews you will find an entire chapter on examples of the heroes of faith in the Bible. Take a moment to read it, and allow His Word to encourage your heart.
One of my favorite people in the Bible is Enoch. I have often said I want what is said of Enoch on my epitaph when I go home.
Hebrews 11:5-6 states:
"By faith Enoch was taken up so that he would not see death; and He was not found because God took Him up; for he obtained the witness that before his being taken up he was pleasing to God.
And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him."
It doesn’t speak of any achievements, only that he obtained a witness that he was pleasing to God. He loved God with all his heart, and obviously wanted to please the One he loved most. That is my deepest desire.
When pleasing God, we often will not please friends and family. I am sorry for that, but my love for God is greater than for anyone else. He is truly God. There is only one God; I do know Him, and He knows me, just as it says of Enoch and the others in Hebrews 11.
Hebrews 11:16 declares that for us who love and know Him as our one true God, and believe in His promises, and are not in love with this world more than the One to come:
"But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God; for He has prepared a city for them."
Friend, I want to join these saints in Hebrews 11 someday. As I read these verses they enable me to be strong, steadfast and immovable, continuing the work of the Lord knowing it is not in vain, no matter how dark it can seem in this world at times. We must have faith more in the unseen God than what we feel, hear, see, and think. This is not our final destiny. We want to live our lives prioritizing pleasing the God we love. Remember, without faith it is impossible to please Him, and we must believe He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
We do not want Him to be ashamed to be called our God at His coming!! O the Word of God! How rich and true. It is all powerful enough to change any life, including mine and yours!
In His love.
When my toiling gets to be more than I can bare, this is where you will find Braveheart and me located not far from home. I thank God for my places of refuge!