Endure and Receive

August 1, 2018

Hebrews 10:36… For you have need of endurance so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive what is promised.

            Thank a lot, Bible. First you tell me I have to obey and then, after doing what you asked, I have to endure. Shouldn’t obedience be immediately rewarded? Shouldn’t all discomfort and pain be taken away? Instead, we learn here that difficulties may persist. We have need of endurance. Sometimes we want obedience to feed our pride. “If is do this, then God will use me.”

            Over the last 5 years of my life, I have been acutely aware of the ageing process. Aging, for me, has not been a reward for a life well lived. In fact, it has been a reminder of possible mistakes made. “Retirement” has been a stage in life, greatly desired, but not greatly enjoyed. With age has come new struggles and new obstacles. One of those struggles is accepting the fact that I am not young anymore… I can’t do all that I used to do. I can fight that, living in the past, or I must accept it and find my new role in life. So much endurance... Will it ever end? Yes, it will. In the arms of Jesus, my salvation is complete and I struggle no more. Now, if I could just remember where I put His arms. Fortunately, it is not up to me; it is up to Him. “Come unto me and I will give you rest.” Jesus is alive. He is not a picture on the wall, or a statue on  shelf, or a Bible on a table, or the presence in a particular room; He is God, He rose from the dead and He lives, today.

            Sometimes, to get to the dawn of the next day, I must endure the night. That is not always comfortable. But, the nature of endurance is that we don’t like what we are going through. You don’t need endurance to make it through a bowl of ice cream. That triggers another thought. I assumed being ‘careful what you eat’ would be over at some point. Not! With a decrease in activity came an increase in girth. With an increase in girth comes a decrease in favorite foods. Why are favorite foods always, it seems, bad for me. That seems like a worthwhile reward… “You can eat anything you want.” There is no way around today’s verse. We do have need of endurance. Life continues to be challenging.

Don’t complain… endure!