Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – February 29, 2016
I [Jesus] am coming quickly. Hold tight what you have, so that no one will take your crown [by leading you to renounce the faith]. Revelation 3:11, AMP
I’m a former 10K runner and a one time half marathoner (13.1 miles). I trained for the longer race with a friend. We of course, enjoyed the camaraderie and provided for each other needed accountability and encouragement. The preparation for the half marathon was hard, but fulfilling. On race day we were in our best shape. The weather, though a chilly 35 degrees, was sunny with a brilliant blue sky—there was only one problem: I was very sick with the flu. The first ten miles went fast. The last three miles were as slow as molasses. My friend waited on me and helped me finish well.
Jesus reminds the church and individual believers to keep their faith in Him. Christ instructed His bride to hold onto the hope of His return, not allowing individual naysayers or the cynical culture to cause the Christians to renounce their reliance on God. The race of faith requires preparation, perseverance and other faithful friends to help us finish well. The victor’s crown is not royalty, but a wreath of righteousness given by the Righteous One—Jesus. Yes, when we faithfully hang onto Jesus—we experience joy—in anticipation of His eternal joy unspeakable!
“The genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls” (1 Peter 1:7-9, NKJV).
When truth becomes too familiar it slips through the fingertips of our faith. For example, we may know in our head that God’s peace protects us from anxious thoughts, but only when we take this to heart do we live by faith and not in fear. Another too familiar truth is God’s sovereignty. Since the Lord is in control—do we as followers of Jesus really need to emotionally and spiritually hyperventilate over the political condition of our country? Some Christians seem no different from non-Christians in their fearful predictions of depression and despair. Faith hopes in God.
Rather than attempt to individually gut it out with God—Christians collectively, are better together. As we run our race of faith, some will stumble and need one or several of us to help them up—perhaps mend them, before they step back onto the track. If weary—we must stop, rest and hydrate our soul. Those who run the race of faith together have a higher probability of finishing well. Yes, keep faith in Jesus—by looking to be crowned by Jesus.
“Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing” (2 Timothy 4:8).
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I look forward by faith to Your reward for all who finish faithful.
Application: What other person in the faith needs my help and encouragement?
Related Readings: 1 Corinthians 9:25; 1 Peter 1:13; 1 Thessalonians 2:19; Revelation 2:10
Post/Tweet this today: Rather than attempt to individually gut it out with God- Christians collectively, are better together. #WisdomHunters #keepfaithinJesus
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© 2016 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.
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