Tuesday, April 29, 2014



Sometimes when we are going through something hard in our lives...we tend to want to give up or give in...but if we PERSEVERE...there is usually great reward at the end of the journey.  I am thinking about when we were walking around Israel...walking, walking, walking...up and down stone roads, dirt ruts, hills and valleys...fighting the pain, enduring leg cramps....huffing and puffing (P.S. NOTE TO SELF: GO INTO TRAINING BEFORE GOING BACK TO ISRAEL) and then arriving at some magnificent site. You begin to anticipate through the pain of the walking...that it will be worth it in the end.

I began to think of the people of the Bible...how much they sacrificed as they came to the temple from all directions, braving weather, going where there were no roads or minimal roadways...to be in the presence of the Lord and offer sacrifices and celebrate with feasts unto Him.  They sacrificed time, money, physical discomfort.  I grumble and complain when I have to get up and drive in my comfortable car to go to church.

When we have been JUSTIFIED BY FAITH...we have PEACE WITH GOD through OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST.  We have also obtained our INTRODUCTION BY FAITH into this GRACE in which we STAND...and we EXULT in HOPE OF THE GLORY OF GOD. (Romans 5:1-2)  As we BEGIN this journey of grace, faith, and hope...we begin to go through progression in the journey.  Romans 5:3-5 we see the beginning and the prize at the end:

1.  Exult in tribulations
2.  Tribulation brings about perseverance
3.  Perseverance brings about proven character
4.  Proven character brings about hope
5.  Hope does not disappoint
6.  The Love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the
     Holy Spirit.

I begin to think of Jesus, leaving His comfort in glory, taking on the form of man...walk around for three years doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the d-evil...with His destination being to be tortured, mocked, humiliated, and nailed to a wooden cross in our place.  Why...and How could he do such a thing?  Well...because of the JOY SET BEFORE HIM.

"Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us (who travelled the journey prior to us)...let us also lay aside every encumbrance, and the sin...which so easily entangles us, and let us run with ENDURANCE the race that is set before us.  FIXING OUR EYES ON JESUS...the author and finisher of our faith...who for the JOY SET BEFORE HIM...ENDURED THE CROSS...DESPISING THE SHAME, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." (Hebrews 12:1-2)

The JOY set before Him...as He endured the CROSS and despising the SHAME...was the joy of the RESURRECTION....emerging from DEATH into LIFE...being reunited with His Father...and bring with Him you and me.
What are you going through?  What are you enduring?  What shame is trying to bring you down?  Go through it with great faith and hope for the JOY SET BEFORE YOU...knowing that as you walk through the valley of the shadow of death...you do not have to fear evil...for HE IS WITH YOU.

Love and Persevering Kisses
Rodney "Enduring" Boyd


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