Endurance

Even now I can still hear the spinning instructor… “Push it out!  10 more seconds… Sprint!!!”  It was only 6:00 o’clock this morning when sweat had already begun to trickle down my face, and we were only a few minutes into the workout.  Lord, help me! I thought to myself and felt relieved when she shouted, “Done!…”

(Me): Whoo hoo, I did another sprint!

(Instructor):  “…only 8 more to go!”

(Me): You gotta be kidding me… 

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Have you ever felt this way before?  I’ve heard life referred to as “a rat race,” and there have been times when someone told me to push it out, to ride out the storm, and to just climb the mountain in order to reach the valley that was waiting on the other side.  While that all sounded great and made me want to shout, “Yes, I’ll climb the mountain!  I want to reach that valley!”  There was something that I needed to keep me on the journey after I had started…

.endurance.

During times when the “rat race” seems too hard and when we just want to give up, we must look to this scripture!  There is endurance and there is encouragement for you and me.  From whom?  From the Lord God Himself!  In this letter, I can imagine Paul is writing to the Romans to say,

“Look, I know that what you’re going through–the persecution, the fear of death, etc–is hard, and you feel as though you want to give up.  I’ve been there too!  BUT.  Remember the cross!  Remember what God has been doing since the beginning and what He will continue to do through us as His body.

He has given us one another to act as a BODY because each member is just as important as the other.  The only way that we can survive and then thrive is to work together as one, strengthened by the One who brought us together.  Together, we can find our joy in Him, thank Him for everything, and rejoice in His name.”

This message of hope and encouragement is just as true for us today as it was when Paul wrote this letter however long ago.  The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).

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“Some trust in chariots and some in horses,

but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.

They are brought to their knees and fall,

but we rise up and stand firm.

O Lord, save the king!

Answer us when we call!”

Psalm 20:7-9

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“O Lord my God, I called to you for help and you healed me.”

Psalm 30:2

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Trust in the Lord as your strength, your source of endurance, and your hope.  Call upon His name!

Praying your day is filled with SONshine,

Another school year is here!

 

 

It hit me this morning after church… Today is my last day of summer, and I can hardly believe it!!!  The big move-in day to the dorms here at MSU was on Saturday.  What a blessing it was to see so many new faces coming to campus, the newest members of the Bulldog family!  Before too long, it will be time for tailgating and football games again.  I can already see the tents, smell the charcoal grills, and hear the cowbells ringing in the stadium…

With all of this on my mind, I pulled out my paintbrushes and began to paint another favorite scene of Mississippi in the fall…

…fluffy, white cotton fields.  With warm winter months, it’s the closest thing to a snowy, white landscape that we can get here in Mississippi!

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Thanks for checking in, dear readers, and I hope all is well for you!

Praying your day is filled with SONshine,

Sarah 🙂

1 Thessalonians 1:2-3

Thriving even in the drought

 

 

Life is full of changes.  One of the most popular passages in Ecclesiastes (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8) refers to how there is a season for everything in our lives!  In the midst of all of this change, how can we ever find constancy, rest, and security?

…through trusting in the Lord!

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Thus says the Lord: “Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart turns away from the Lord.  He is like a shrub in the desert, and shall not see any good come.  He shall dwell in the parched places of the wilderness, in an uninhabited salt land.

 

Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord,

whose trust IS the Lord.

He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream,

and does not fear when the heat comes, for its leaves remain green,

and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.”

Jeremiah 17:5-8

Isn’t this passage of scripture great?  The image of the tree planted by the stream was so powerful to me, just as the description of the shrub in the desert was so humbling, as well.  All too often, I rely on man and on my own flesh.  Just like the shrub in the desert, I have felt the withering effects of finding sustenance in the temporal, rather than the eternal.

But when we place our trust completely in the Lord, we are connected to the Living Water!  Hebrews 13:8 says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever,” and Hebrews 2:8 says that everything has been placed in subjection under his feet.  No matter what, Jesus is the Lord, and He is the King over all of creation.  Nothing is outside of His control, so rest in the blessed assurance that “he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6).

Do you feel as though you are going through the uninhabited, salt land?  Then check your heart!  Are you trusting in men and yourself or are you trusting in the Lord?  Only when you trust in Him and your trust IS Him, will you be connected to the Life-source that can and will sustain you through even the roughest and driest seasons of life.

Praying your day is filled with SONshine,

Sarah 🙂