Saturday, August 15, 2009

8/15- Perseverance

Devotional using scripture, quote from John Calvin and thoughts for the day each day- on the 500th anniversary of Calvin's birth.

What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? 33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34 Who then can condemn? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?.. No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, [m] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:31ff).

Calvin: “There is no other reason why some persevere to the end, while others fall at the beginning of the course. For perseverance itself is a gift from God, which he does not dispose on all discriminately, but imparts to whom he pleases.” (II.5.3)

Thought: Our own strength is small, and even that is a gift from God. I once knew a huge weightlifter who caught a rare illness that devastated his body. Even the strongest of us is vulnerable. The ability to persevere through the trials of life and the crosses is itself a gift from God. We are called to persist and be faithful, however, because Christ is faithful and persisted for us. Today I am sending my son off to college (he is a freshman). My prayer for him is to be faithful to God, and to grow in his faith while he is away. Calvin certainly persevered. He was exiled from his home country, robbed, ridiculed, kicked out of Geneva, faced family illness, his wife died, they had three miscarriages/still births. Yet he did a tremendous amount of good- and attributed it all to God.

Prayer: Our help lies in you, O God. Help us to persevere through the heartaches and problems of life. Help us to find you hope, joy, and strength. Keep our eyes focused on the finished line.

No comments:

Post a Comment