July 2, 2017

Victory Through Endurance, part 3


“Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance;”—Romans 5:3 (NIV)

We all go through temporary setbacks. Some of us get slowed down by a few pebbles along the road of life. Others are continually dealing with boulders the size of Hoover Dam. These rocks may be lifelong obstructions, too.

This article is for those of us who can’t ever seem to move out of the path of the storm. Here are some examples of what we might face:
  • Our kid doesn’t just come home late a few times, he no longer believes in the religion passed down through generations.
  • We don’t just get a few colds a year—and maybe the flu. We have one or more chronic medical/dental conditions that seriously limit our lives.
  • Some of us deal with much more than occasional sadness. We live in a claustrophobic world of frustration, anxiety, and fear.
When Life Doesn’t Make Sense

Sometimes our circumstances can seem confusing and out of control. A person may feel blocked from any progress, because she is used to constant struggle.

That’s when we must all reach deep down inside to access a superhuman strength. This unexpected power can be unfamiliar to individuals who deal only with an occasional blip on the radar of life.

The Benefits of the Uphill Battle for Success

Victory is a process. Prominent entertainers and athletes usually endure “failure”, mind-numbing training, and harsh negativity on the way to winning their gold medal.

As unlikely as it may seem, opposition can bring about favorable results. Victories come only through persistence. Let’s break it down into four areas:

1.     Dark Times Bring True Growth.
“Stars can’t shine without darkness.”—D.H. Sidebottom
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“Every worthy act is difficult. Ascent is always difficult. Descent is easy and often slippery.”—Mahatma Ghandi
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“If there is no struggle, there is no progress.”—Frederick Douglass
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“A kite flies against the wind, not with it.”—Sir Winston Churchill
2.    There’s an Underlying Purpose.
“Have faith in your journey. Everything had to happen exactly how it did to get you where you’re going next.”--@InspowerBooks_
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“Nothing in your life happens to you; it happens for you.”—Joel Osteen
3.     Obstacles are the Stepping Stones to Achievement.
“Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.”—Albert Einstein
4.     We get Divine Help.
“…though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with His hand.” Psalm 37:24 (NIV)
My Conclusion
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.”—James 1:2-3 (NIV)
Some of the strongest people I know are the former victims of abuse. They have been pushed into the deepest, darkest pit imaginable--often by their own family members--and they have risen out of it.

They are phoenixes rising from the ashes. They are living proof of philosopher Friedrich Nietzche’s most famous quote: “That which does not kill us makes us stronger.”
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How are you persevering?