Friday, January 8, 2010

Day 5 - Perseverance

Hebrews 11:7, Genesis 6 : 9 – 22

Have you seen the movie Evan Almighty? It is a modern-day version of Noah and the ark. God visits Evan, a freshman Senator in Washington DC, and tells him to build an ark. Strange things begin to happen to Evan as he fulfills God’s command and he is mocked and ridiculed along the way. Evan endures this for months before the ark is finally completed.

Now, the story of Noah isn’t played out the same way in the Bible; however, the movie gives us an idea of what Noah may have had to endure. Keep in mind that before the flood, it didn’t rain. No one had ever seen a flood before, let alone a flood that would cover the earth. The Bible tells us that everyone living on the earth (Noah being the exception) were evil. I’m sure Noah had to endure some mocking and ridicule from the people as he and his sons worked on the ark. The commentary in my Bible says that it took Noah and his sons 120 years to build the ark. This was a long-term and difficult commitment and Noah remained faithful to the call. I also want to point out that this call that God gave Noah was a call that God had never given to anyone before or since that time! This was a one-time call, yet that didn’t diminish the call.

Sometimes God can give us a call that seems impossible or too difficult to carry out. We may even reach road blocks along the way, such as misunderstandings or human error. Sometimes the dreams God places on our hearts are something no one has seen before so it is hard to find support. Hebrews 11:7 says, “…By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.” Sometimes our obedience to the call will point out others’ disobedience and that can put us in difficult situations. Sometimes our call takes years before we see the fruits of our labors, yet God wants us to continue.

Think about this, a lot of things that are commonplace to us now began with a dream God placed on someone’s heart. God gave Martin Luther a vision to translate the Bible in German so all people could read and understand the Bible rather than have a priest translate parts of the Bible from Latin. Through that and other acts of obedience, Martin Luther lost his standing in the Catholic Church. Galileo was put in prison for saying the sun was the center of the solar system. At some point a church decided to use technology and put their services on T.V. Charles Wesley decided to use tavern songs and change the lyrics to worship God so people could learn them quicker, which are hymns that are still sung in many churches today.

These are just a few examples of callings that were new ideas at the time. What makes us think that God has stopped giving calls that are new, creative, and at times difficult? Sometimes obedience isn’t easy, but God will give us the strength to complete the project. We need to trust Him. Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do everything through him who gives me strength.”

Has God given you a vision that is feeling stagnant because of difficulties or what seems to be a road block? Where does God want to see you persevere? Pray for the strength to finish the project.

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