So do not lose the courage you had in the past, which has a great reward. Hebrews 10:35 (NCV)

You started out strong enough. You went to church and a small group Bible Study. Maybe you even had one in your home and you were the leader. As a young person you had aspirations of being in the ministry or even being a missionary to some far off culture. You had visions of winning entire villages to Jesus Christ.

Then reality hit, and it hit hard. You never saw that divorce coming. If only you’d studied harder in high school, maybe your grades would have allowed you to get into college. Your health issues kept you from attaining many of the dreams you had at one time. You wonder what happened to your spouse. He/she once held the same values, the same fire you had for ministry but now, it’s the one hindrance in an otherwise great relationship and it’s keeping you from feeling fulfilled and squashing your ability to use your gifts.

There are those that will tell you that the level of your ability to ‘live for Christ’ is a measuring stick of your love for him. Often, it’s the other way around. The realization of our weaknesses and failures is proof of our love for Christ. That may seem like backwards thinking, but the more we desire to live for Jesus, the more His Spirit will show us areas that need change…and the more the enemy will try to send us on huge guilt trips.

Jesus shows us where we can change. Satan reminds us change is impossible. Jesus gently calls us to him. Satan screams accusations. Jesus calls to you through the darkness. Satan reminds you of the dangers lurking in the dark.

When you feel misunderstood, Jesus understands. When you feel attacked, Jesus sends endurance and safety. When you feel pressured to give in, Jesus sends encouragement to press on. “He will not crush the weakest reed or put out a flickering candle. He will bring justice to all who have been wronged.” Isaiah 42:3 (NLT)

Take courage pilgrim. While we walk this Wilderness Road complete with rocks and the threat of attack from the bluffs on either side of us, we have one who walks with us. He knows the way. He is ready to defend, encourage and protect. He’s ready to walk with us all the way. When we reach the end; when endure this road we’ve travelled; victory will be ours and the reward great!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, I need your strength today to be strong. My own fear of failure and the enemies attack have done their work to keep me defeated. Empower me today to be strong through your Holy Spirit. Amen.