Hang In There 5 Minutes More!

"Love never fails."

1 Corinthians 13:8

Like most people with an email account I receive notes from believers with bible verses and quotes attached to them as well as devotionals from ministries I have signed up for that are meant to encourage me and strengthen my walk with Jesus. One such encouragement I received came from a subscription on leadership and it was a quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson that said, "A hero is no braver than an ordinary man, but he is brave five minutes longer."

As I was thinking about what the quote meant the Lord quickened a passage of scripture to my mind from John 13:1 which says, "Now before the feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart from this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end." it was the last sentence that encouraged my heart and I pray it does yours today too, loved one. It says Jesus "loved them to the end". The implication is not that some how Jesus love ended for us when He went to the Cross. No, it is far better. The text reminds us that Jesus has never stopped loving us, He never quit on us, even though all quit on Him. Jesus is no ordinary man as He is the Son of God.

As I thought about Jesus words so many scriptures came to mind as well as stories I have grown to appreciate from life about staying the course and finishing the race before us. Most of us have heard reference made to a speech that Winston Churchill made regarding quitting. It took place on October 29, 1941, when United Kingdom (Great Britain) Prime Minister Winston Churchill visited Harrow School to hear the traditional songs he had sung there as a youth, as well as to speak to the students. This visit became one of his most quoted speeches, and not so much because of the content or the quality of what he spoke of but due to distortions that evolved about what he actually said that day.
The myth is that Churchill stood before the students and said, "Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, give up. Never give up. Never give up. Never give up." Then he sat down. In reality, he made a complete speech that included words similar to what are often misquoted. What he actually said in his speech that day was, "Never ever, ever, ever ever give in. Never give in, Never give in. Never give in." What Winston Churchill was exhorting the students to do that day was to persevere, to stay the course, and not to compromise. Churchill wanted the students to understand what another great leader and innovator of his own day had said. It was Thomas A. Edison, who knew from personal experience that, “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.”

If anyone understood failure and the desire to quit it was Edison. On a cold December night in 1914, Thomas Edison’s factory burst into flames that consumed all of his current projects and much of his life’s work.  At 67 years old he sat on a grassy knoll and watched everything he had worked for being destroyed in front of his own eyes.  His wife was worried that he would become distraught over the loss and she sent their children to find their father who was sitting there almost as it were with a grin on his face watching his life's work being consumed before his very eyes. The next morning, Mr.Edison looked at the ruins of his factory and said of his loss: “There’s value in disaster. All our mistakes are burned up. Thank God, we can start anew and now more intelligently.”

Have you ever felt as if your life was like watching a warehouse burn down and all you can do is sit by hopelessly and watch? Been there done that! If you have ever suffered loss you probably have felt that to some degree. The good news this morning, loved one, if you are a child of God, you can, like Thomas Edison thank God and start anew as the book of Lamentations so graciously reminds us in chapter 3:22-23, "Through the Lord's mercies we are not consumed, Because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness." Did you get that, loved one, in a world where everything is one day going to burn up in a puff of smoke there are a few things that will remain, the mercy of God and His compassion for you and me as His faithfulness that is so great it never fails, it never gives in!

Because greater is He who is in you, you can do it too, you can hang in there. Be the brave one and hang in there just five minutes longer! Make this your prayer today as I make it mine too, loved one, "God grant me the faith and the strength to hold on five minutes longer, to live in the light of Hebrews 11:1, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Help me to see today through the eyes of faith and fill me overflowing with the power of love, for Your love never fails. In Jesus name!"

"But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them."

Hebrews 11:16


Michael Osthimer





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