Persevering Happens Off Stage

Today I want to talk about perseverance. It may seem like a strange topic for my first post in over a month but it’s everything for me at the moment. It’s just the things I’ve persevered with haven’t included this blog in recent weeks.

Often the media would seem to suggest that perseverance is for people who just aren’t good enough; that the truly talented will be spotted and will rise quickly to the top. It’s part of the draw of the t.v. talent show:  that someone can, in the course of a few weeks go from unknown to the next big thing. All that really happens on these things is that the perseverance mostly happens off stage as it almost always does. Nobody wants to see the thousands of hours of practice and effort that go into getting good enough to really master anything so either it all happens before you ever see them or they do badly and all the perseverance happens later or sadly maybe it never does.

This isn’t a dig against t.v. talent shows, it’s a comment against the idea that anyone can ever become excellent at anything or achieve anything truly impressive without persevering in their pursuit of that goal.

Perseverance isn’t easy and it often isn’t fun, but if you want to do something you must find a way to keep practicing for, studying for, and reaching for, that goal; and most of all you must persevere in believing that you will get there.

God Bless

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Perseverance

Perseverance isn’t easy, it isn’t fun, it isn’t always dignified; there will be moments when you scream out in frustration or fall to the floor exhausted. You’ll sit there in the unwavering knowledge that you haven’t the strength to go on. You’ll sit there on that floor for minutes, hours, or even days, looking up at a job half done. You’ll give up and give in; then you’ll find the strength to go on again.

Who knows where you’ll find that strength; in yourself, in family, in God; but you will find it, you must! You’ll come to see that strength isn’t found in the new, undamaged, flawless ones; but in those who have been through the flames and the floods and the wars of this life and come battered out the other side: it is these ones who have faced it all and remain standing, these are are the strong ones.

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The Itch Wall

Some problems are like walls of brick,

hard and strong and very thick.

We must scale them, or tunnel through to continue on our way.

Many have spoken on such things, much their words did say.

This verse concerns another ill,

those smaller problems that annoy us still.

They bother us, itch at us until we can’t ignore,

we scratch them, scratch again, scratch until we’re sore.

The more we scratch, the more we bleed,

we’re injured bad, we’ve done the deed.

That little itch is everything, that itch is all.

Within us we’ve made it huge, we’ve made a wall.

We try to scale it or tunnel through.

The challenge makes us grow but the wall is growing too.

We stare at it till it’s all we see,

if we can’t get rid of it, it’s all we’ll be.

Every scratch has made it bigger, every word has made it stronger,

we’ve tried to fight against this wall, but we can fight no longer.

It’s time to try another thought, run to live another day,

ignore the wall and look away.

The walls we built were the strongest of all,

we gave them us and it made them tall.

That itch-wall was drawing strength from every scratch,

denied you, it was no match.

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Making God Understood

Perhaps you’re an expert in something. You have studied it so long and in so much detail that, while others would struggle to comprehend, you can explain it easily. That’s good isn’t it? A cause for satisfaction, of course, but what if we get like that about God?

I see two problems: that we think there is nothing left to learn, or that we lose the ability to explain him in a way that anyone who hasn’t spent years in Church can understand.

If you’re suffering from the first problem then you simply need to be reminded how huge and complex God is, put your pride to one side and admit there is still plenty to learn.

If you’re suffering from the second problem then read this – The Messiah, the very word of God, who existed before the world was created, became man and remained sinless as he lived and preached his way to his crucifixion and subsequent resurrection: through which we are redeemed, purified, and welcomed into eternity. – If this is how you speak to non Christians or even new Christians then you’re not saying anything wrong but, most likely, all you’re doing is confusing them. Christianity is not about pointing to your own intelligence but about pointing to God. He went to huge lengths to make himself understandable for us, becoming man, and even greater lengths to save us from a lost eternity. Let’s try to explain him in a way that people can understand otherwise what’s the point?

God Bless

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My Prayer

Help me, Lord, to get my eyes on you. I feel overwhelmed: I’m trying to tackle this huge complex new thing. Help me to remember I have a huge complex powerful God, help me to look to you always. To see that you are bigger than every problem, that you are stronger than every enemy and that you love me. In everything and through everything, you love me.

Amen

 

Often I like to write my prayers in a journal. I’ve never done this before but, as I was writing this one I felt it was right to share it. Hopefully it will help you to connect with God.

God Bless

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Who Pays For Free Stuff?

Who pay’s for free stuff?

If you think about that question you’ll begin to see who and what people and society as a whole cares about.

The simplest answer is someone else which leads me to ask why? There might be a hundred different answers but most of them will boil down to caring about others: loving people.

When you’re a child, who pays for your clothes, your food, your house? Most likely it’s your parents. Why? Because they love you.

In my country (The United Kingdom) when you’re sick you don’t face a bill, you get care for free paid for by everyone’s taxes. Why? Because a long time ago we decided that loving each other made us all stronger. The National Health Service costs £116.4 billion a year and yet it is free when you need it.

When you’re an imperfect person (as we all are), trapped in sin, and you need someone to save you, who pays?

Salvation is free but it cost God everything: it cost him a challenging life, a torturous death, and the experience of being completely cut of from the love and the strength of God. The one who is perfect became sin to pay a price we could never pay. Next time you start to take your salvation for granted remember who pays for your free stuff!

God Bless

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Today

Tomorrow doesn’t exist, only today

one day at a time, that’s the way.

Today is my world, my place.

In the morning, dawn will break,

we’ll find the energy it will take.

Still they’ll be no tomorrow, only today.

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