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<< Encouragement for Today

Encouragement for Today - January 6, 2006

  • 2006 Jan 06
  • COMMENTS

 

1-6-06

Encouragement for Today

 

“Nobody Likes a Quitter” 

By Susanne Scheppmann, Co-editor Online Devotions, Proverbs 31 Speaker Team Member

 

Key Verse:

Psalm 27:14, “Stay with God! Take heart. Don't quit. I'll say it again: Stay with God. (The Message)

 

Devotion:

It’s that time of year. The time of year when people make New Year Resolutions.  I don’t like New Year resolutions. Why you ask? Because I never accomplish my admirable goals such as weight loss, exercise, a cleaner home, or more home cooked meals.   I give up around the third week of January. I quit.

 

Not only do we like to finish what we start, we want to be the best at what we do.  We want to win.  Both my sons like to win at any game they play. I remember when they were little, my oldest son had a tendency to change the rules as the game progressed, so he could become the champion.  I would watch from the living room as my younger son’s face turned red at the injustice.  With clinched his fists, he would holler, “I quit!”

 

Of course, this declaration always made my older son furious.

 

Nobody likes a quitter.   Nobody likes quitters, except God the Rejuvenator. 

 

Think about the Prophet Elijah.  He called down fire from heaven.  He prayed for and received a downpour of rain in the midst of a drought.  Then he quit.  He ran into the desert and sat under a lone scraggly tree with the attitude of, “I have had enough, Lord," he said. "Take my life!” (1 Kings 19:4, NIV)   In other words, “I quit!”

 

However, God came to rejuvenate Elijah.  He refreshed Elijah with food, drink and rest. Rejuvenated, Elijah went on to finish his ministry.

 

Nobody likes a quitter, but God the Re-establisher.

 

Do you remember Jonah?  He quit before he got started. Interestingly, God has a way about changing our minds.  After Jonah floated around in the stomach of the whale for a while, God stepped in to encourage him to complete the mission to Nineveh. The Bible says:

Then God spoke to the fish, and it vomited up Jonah on the seashore.

Next, God spoke to Jonah a second time: "Up on your feet and on your way to the big city of Nineveh! Preach to them. They're in a bad way and I can't ignore it any longer." This time Jonah started off straight for Nineveh, obeying God's orders to the letter.   (Jonah 2:10-3:3, The Message)

 

Nobody likes quitters, except God the Restorer.

 

My favorite biblical quitter happens to be John Mark.   This young Christian man quit while on a missionary endeavor with Barnabus and Paul.  He ran home when the going got tough. His desertion made the Apostle Paul furious.

 

Have you already guessed what happened? You’re right! God restored John Mark back to ministry.  God restored the relationship between John Mark and Paul. Look at what Paul wrote, “Only Luke is with me. Get [John] Mark and bring him with you,   because he is helpful to me in my ministry.” (2 Tim. 4:11, NIV) 

 

So what about you?  Have you ever been tired of ministry, tired of family, or sick and tired of being tired?  Have you felt like throwing in the towel and shouting, “I quit!”?

 

Unfortunately, I have quit more times than I like to admit. Yet, I know God the Refresher, the Encourager and the Restorer. He urges me on just as He did with Elijah, Jonah and John Mark.  He whispers in my heart, “Haven't I commanded you? Strength! Courage! Don't be timid; don't get discouraged. God, your God, is with you every step you take." (Joshua 1:9, The Message) 

 

Don’t quit!  Listen to God whisper, “Be strong.  Be courageous! Keep moving on the life path He has placed you. God see you as a winner!

 

My Prayer for Today:

Father God, sometimes I feel like quitting.  I want to quit being a wife and mom.  Some days I would like to quit being me and be someone else.  Lord, I am asking You to encourage and refresh me on the days, I want to quit.  And if I have to quit on something I shouldn’t have, I ask that You restore me.  Lord, thank You for not giving up on me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

Application Steps:  

Read Joshua 1.  Underline in red pencil every time you see the words “Be strong and courageous.”  List a few things you need to be strong and courageous about in your life.  Then ask the Lord to remind you each day of this truth, “The Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

  

Reflection Points:       

Do I consider myself a quitter?

 

How does God encourage me when I want to quit?

 

Do I allow myself enough rest so that I do not feel fatigued constantly?

 

Can I view myself as a winner through the eyes of God?

   

Power Verses:

Galatians 6:9, “So let's not allow ourselves to get fatigued doing good. At the right time we will harvest a good crop if we don't give up, or quit.” (The Message)

 

Isaiah 40:30-31, “Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall;     but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (NIV)

 

Matthew 11:28, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (NIV)

 

  Psalm 27:14, “Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” (NIV) 

 

Judges 6:12, “When the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon, he said, "The Lord is with you, mighty warrior." (NIV) 

 

Additional Resources: 

What Happens When Women Walk in Faith, by Lysa TerKeurst

http://proverbs31.gospelcom.net/newresources_whatHappens.htm

 

P31 Woman Magazine

http://proverbs31.gospelcom.net/woman.htm

 

Radically Obedient, Radically Blessed (3-tape set), by Lysa TerKeurst

 

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