Winning

Ever feel tired? Especially after the long day you had at work that seemed like it would never end. Or the 5 classes in a row you had to somehow sit through after staying up all night writing a research paper. Or maybe you had a day full of crying babies, dirty diapers, and kids running around everywhere.  Yeah, I bet you’re tired.

Physically – we feel exhausted a lot. Long days, tiring tasks and many responsibilities lead to the desire to just sleep. When we come home from taking our last exam, after a marathon of exams that week, our bed is the only thing that matters. And as we lay down after work, while taking off our shoes, we breathe a sigh of relief because we barely made the deadline. Oh, and hearing peace and quiet, when the kids are finally asleep after a rough day, is probably like being on a beach in Hawaii. There’s nothing else like finally being able to get some rest in a comfy, cozy bed at the end of the day.

But let’s be honest. Physical exhaustion isn’t the only kind of exhaustion we face. What about spiritually? What’s the remedy for that? Is there some place we can go to find a magical bed that’ll somehow rejuvenate us and make us feel ready for what’s next? No, there’s definitely not a magical bed. Well, not that I know of…but there is something better. Way better.

As maturing believers, it’s inevitable to face days that are full of struggle. For me, there have been days I have felt such a negative energy, spiritually. Times when the negativity feels so overwhelming, but I know that I have to fight it.

We are fighters. Fighters who have already won. That seems to be a paradox. Why do we fight, if we’ve already won? Well, we can’t deny that we are human. We are still reminded of the past, confronted with many temptations and sometimes seek the wrong thing, just because something in us is telling us to. We know the difference between right and wrong. And we have a guideline to follow, the Word of God. But still, in the midst of this spiritual warfare we face, there is one thought that may cross our minds – I just want to give up. And let me tell you, I think that thought more times than not. For some reason, giving up seems to be a viable option in the middle of struggle. It’s like you feel like your fighting for something, but you don’t know what. Or maybe you do know what you’re fighting for, but you feel like your fighting is never ending and not getting you anywhere.

That’s our problem. We always want to see something now. Not tomorrow, not in twenty years and definitely not while we spend eternity in Heaven. We don’t want to wait. If we fight, and we win, we want to see the grand prize immediately. We don’t believe the following –

“You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.”

1 John 4:4

There’s two ways I look at this –

  1. We forget that we have already won the grand prize. It happens to the best of us. At times, you feel helpless. When the struggle is currently happening in your life, sometimes it’s hard to remember God’s promises.  It’s all about discipline. You have to trust that “He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.” And He who is in you has overcome the world. So whatever is creating this warfare in you, whether it be your attempt to forgive yourself and move on from the past or choosing to obey instead of doing what seems “fun,” you have to believe and KNOW that what you are looking forward to can’t be compared in the slightest to anything remotely good in this world. You have to remember Dory’s words – just keep swimming.
  2. The grand prize isn’t that grand to us. Maybe you’re here. You know that Jesus Christ is your Savior and that God loves you abundantly. But it hasn’t clicked how great the hope you have is. If this is the case for you, then I’m thankful you’re reading this. Let’s refer to Scripture – “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you…” (1 Peter 1:3&4) Hopefully that clears things up. Jesus Christ, with all love and mercy, saved us from a hopeless life. In turn, He gave us something to look forward to that will never change or fade. There’s nothing that beats the hope we have. Be confident in this hope and know how grand it really is.

“For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.”

Romans 8:24&25

Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.”

Colossians 3:2

Instead of looking for that magical bed in fantasy land, turn to Him who will give you rest. With perseverance, let’s set our minds on things above, knowing that what we hope for is totally worth it. No matter how tired you may be, don’t give up; you’re winning. Let He who is in you be your strength. Keep this verse (one of my favorites 🙂 ) close to your heart and believe it, as you face what this week brings –

Psalm 73:26

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