Jun 14, 2013

Down, But Never Out

From my earliest youth my enemies have persecuted me - let Israel now say - from my earliest youth my enemies have persecuted me, but THEY HAVE NEVER been able to finish me off. Psalm 129:1,2

Has there ever been a people so despised as Israel and the Jews? Despite persecution and numerous attempts at annihilation, the ancient people of God have endured.

Why? Because God keeps His promises.

In a similar way, the church has been a lightning rod for hatred for over two thousand years. Evil rulers (spurred on by the evil one) have attempted to rid the earth of the Word of God and the followers of Jesus - but without success.

Why? Because God is faithful.

Jesus assured us that all the powers of hell cannot stop the church in Matthew 16:18 - On this rock I will build My church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

We’ve probably all been knocked to the ground - many times, but we will never be permanently grounded. Through all the trials, struggles and failures God always through Christ will give us the strength to get up and get back in the race.

We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed or distressed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are persecuted and hunted down, but never forsaken or abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. 2 Corinthians 4:8,9

The scriptures above express the fact that though we face troubles, it is our outward circumstances that are effected. We don't have to let those circumstances change us inwardly or take away God's promises to us and the comfort that we have from within knowing we are His. When faced with defeat, we CAN have the inner strength through Christ to turn failure into victory. Through Christ we CAN keep going.

Proverbs 24:16 says, A righteous man may fall seven times but he will get back up again.

This tells us that no matter how many times we get knocked down, we CAN get back up again. The mere effort of us trying to get up, to keep going ... gets God's attention. In our weakest moments God's strength is made perfect and because of this promise, God ALWAYS shows up in our weakest moments. To help, hold, nurture and guide till we're up on our feet and stable and strong again.

Be determined. Say aloud, 'I will NEVER stay down. I will ALWAYS get back up. I'll NEVER, EVER give in!'

We believers may be down at times, but we are NEVER out.

Father, despite hard times and attacks coming against us, our families, our country, our beliefs and the church, be with us. Keep us. Give us peace despite the fact that the world as we know it is ending and things are going to be a whole lot different very soon. Help us to not get caught up in arguments and distractions and even if our 'rights' are stripped away from us, help us to continue to be faithful, try to live right, and share You with whomever will listen. Cause Your people to listen. Protect Jerusalem and may there be peace within its borders. May Your will be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Hurry and come get us Jesus, and help us to be ready. In Jesus' name, amen.