Don’t Give Up! 

James 1:12 (KJV) “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.”

While I deeply love the Word of God, and believe the Holy Spirit inspired all Scripture, I must confess that there are Scriptures that provoke my thoughts and prod me from my comfort zone.  Today’s Scripture does just that!

Another way to present today’s Scripture would be, “Blessed is the man or woman who does not give up, no matter what he or she is going through.  This is the kind of person that God rewards with the crown of life, because he or she proved their love for Him by persevering without complaining.”

“Jon was a middle child whose two brothers seemed to have all the talent.  His older brother excelled in academics and became a famous cardiologist.  His younger brother was a natural athlete.  Jon loved football, but he was a perennial bench warmer in college.  Jon didn’t let his early failures get him down.  He committed himself to learning the game that he loved.  Overcoming disillusionment, Jon Gruden worked hard as an assistance coach for several teams.  He went on to obtain his dream of coaching a Super Bowl team – the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.” –Illustrations Unlimited

Do you feel like you have been dealt a weak hand in life?  Don’t sell yourself short.  God has made you for a special purpose.  Natural talents can only take you so far in life. Skill and wisdom take work.  Keep going in the strength of the Lord.  Soon you WILL reach your dream.  Mike Arnold said, “Those who turn back only remember the ordeal, but those who persevere remember the adventure.”

Habakkuk 2:3 (KJV) “For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.”

  • Did you know that Fred Astaire flunked his first screen test?  The director said, “Can’t act, slightly bald, can dance a little.”
  • It was said of Vince Lombardi, “He possesses minimal football knowledge and he lacks motivation.”
  • Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor because Walt lacked a satisfactory amount of ideas.

Great people may fail but they have one thing in common – THEY DON’T GIVE UP!  Don’t let the opinion of others nor your failures keep you from pursuing your dreams.  If the Lord has placed a vision in your heart, go after it with all your strength.  It may take some time to realize your goals, but in time, God will bring it to pass.

Maybe you’re thinking that God can’t use you because you feel that you have so little to offer. Zechariah 4:10 (KJV) “For who hath despised the day of small things?” 

  • Did you know that the first electric light was so dim that a candle was needed to see its socket?
  • Wilbur and Orville Wright’s first airplane flight lasted only 12 seconds!
  • The first automobiles traveled 2 to 4 miles per hour and broke down often.  Carriages would pass them, and their passengers would shout, “Get a horse!”

Do you feel discouraged?  Are you doing something God has directed, but you are frustrated with a lack of progress?  DON’T GIVE UP!

Humble beginnings often precede important accomplishments.  You must keep going forward.  Richard L. Evans stated it this way, “The tragedy of life is not that it ends so soon, but that we wait so long to begin it.”

We must not quit when it seems difficult.  Joshua 1:9 (KJV) “Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.” 

Dr. David Livingstone was a famous missionary working in uncharted areas of Africa.  A group of friends and supporters wrote him, “We would like to send other men to you.  Have you found a good road into your area yet?”  Dr. Livingstone sent this message in reply, “If you have men who will only come if they know there is a good road, I don’t want them.  I want men who will come if there is no road at all.”

What challenges lie ahead of you?  Don’t let obstacles keep you from moving forward.  Jesus is looking for people who will be willing to venture into uncharted territories.  Trust in the Lord and commit to the task He has laid before you.  Be a trailblazer for God!

A quote by Phillip Brooks sums it up well, “I’ll never become truly spiritual by sitting down and wishing to become so.  I must undertake something so great that it is impossible for me to accomplish it unaided by God.”

I must always remember that I only have the strength that God gives me.  When I put my complete and total trust in the Lord, I make the decision to turn all my dreams, goals, ambitions, worries, and fears over to God.  I realize that I alone am responsible for maintaining my attitude of perseverance.  With everything that is in me, I WILL NOT GIVE UP!  I know that if the task is too hard for me to do – Jesus will finish the work!

DISCLAIMER – this article was first published in our “October, November, December 2004” Newsletter.  Although it is “vaguely” familiar, I do not specifically remember authoring it, and it’s a potentiality that I did not; therefore, as a matter of integrity it must be stated that I am not certain.  Nonetheless, it is presented as an encouragement to us all!