A Little Picture of PerseveranceMay 30, 2006
On Sunday I was with Mother in the car - now I have to explain to any readers our unique situation. We have a little church that meets in a decrepit building on the corner of the main road. (It's decrepit partly because we don't own it, and every service we have no assurance that it won't be our last one in the building - so we don't spend much money on upkeep. We are trying and praying toward buying the building but the owner is a rather moody Hindu man who wants more money out of us than we can give. Thankfully, neither he nor his demands are greater than our God.) Anyway, after service mother was taking a lady home in our car while everyone else waited at the church - except for me. I decided to go along. It was raining, and after dropping off the lady, we were going along the muddy road back toward the church building when we saw a sight. Both Mother and I wished we had the camera, but a word picture must suffice:
A young boy of about seven years was coming down the road. He was barefoot and wearing only underpants (which is very normal in Guyana - and probably better for walking in the rain!) He had probably just ridden the family bike to the local shop to buy ice and was now returning. The bike was a full-size adult bike and he was pushing it with both hands. His head was slightly down, gripping the top of the bag of ice between his front teeth, while rain streamed down his face. His face was a picture of grit and determination as he slowly pushed the bike toward home. What a picture! I hope his mother thanked him when he got home.
Sometimes life is like that.
What kept that boy going? The command of his parent and the end of his trip - home! (and maybe a soft drink with ice when he got there.) Something better awaits believers in Christ - God. Our dwelling place, our eternal home and our fountain of delight forever. He will fill us with joy in His presence, with eternal pleasure at His right hand.
And if we have to tramp barefoot through mud in life, our hands so full, we wish we had three... we can keep on going, one step at a time. Jesus will keep us persevering in grace and our God will bring us safely home. I know that no analogy is a perfect one - our lives aren't always tramping through mud. There is earthly joy many times in our way. But when we have to drudge, the joy of the Lord is our strength and the end of the journey is our hope.
"...strengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them to continue in the faith, and saying that through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God." - Acts 14:22 ESV