“For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised” (Hebrews 10:36).
It’s the nature of human nature to want the quick fix. We’re always looking for the “zap.” We expect God to “zap” away all of our problems, even if those problems were years in the making. We want God to instantaneously heal us, lift our spirits, return our joy,straighten out our kids, fix our spouses, and get us out of debt. We also want all this without a whole lot of personal effort on our part. Then, when God doesn’t immediately cure our addiction, lift our depression, save our marriage, or let us win the lottery we’re disappointed in Him. Left unchecked our disappointment can devolve into disillusionment and despair.
The problem is we’re banking on promises God never made. He never said He was going to make life instantly easy for us. In fact, “we must endure many hardships to enter the kingdom of God” (Acts 14:22). What He promises is to work everything out to our good in conforming us to Christlikeness in preparation for heaven (Rm. 8:28-29). But, until we get to heaven, “the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force” (Mt. 11:12). That is, the devil violently tries to keep the children of the Kingdom (us) from experiencing all the benefits of the Kingdom.
Help, healing, joy, deliverance, and perseverance are all benefits belonging to us as Kingdom kids but we must fight for them with violent, forceful faith, enduring long battles until they’re won. Forceful faith is simply dogged determination to believe God and obey His will no matter what. So, don’t give up children of God! Let’s “endure hardship as training” (Hb. 12:7). Our Father is preparing us to receive what He’s promised.
© Paul R Downing