Happiness is not determined by what’s happening around me but what’s going on inside me. You are about as happy as you choose to be.
Life is tough.
Jesus said Blessed are those who persist in times of persecution. Many throughout history have lost their lives for declaring that Jesus is Lord.
Billy’s father was barely spared as a missionary in the Congo – he had to go home unexpectedly; the Simba rebels killed everyone on his station, because they wouldn’t say other than that Jesus is Lord. The men were shot, the women and children were marched into the rivers to be eaten by crocodiles as they sang ‘Jesus is very near.’
Billy himself went to preach in various places in Pakistan- where they put a fatwa on him. He had to be smuggled out in the boot of a car.
He had just a taste of what ‘our brothers & sisters everywhere’ are going through. We can be dragged down by the inevitables of life.
Jesus said ‘in this world you will have trouble but take heart, I have overcome the world.’ We can overcome when we know who we are and what God has done for us. Jesus knew where he had come from and where he was going to. So he could go through anything!
The apostle Paul knew his call and the cost was worth it. He knew victory was inevitable.
In our everyday world – you can overcome.
Paganini – world famous violinist. In a concert in Italy, in the middle of the concerto: a string snapped – what does he do? Played with three – then another goes
It kept happening till he had only string.
And he kept playing
Able seaman Kate Nesbitt attached to
3 commando in Helmund 2003.
Hearing ‘Man down’
Did what she was trained to do, with rockets flying all round- and saved a man- received the Military Cross Posthumously.
Derek Redmond 400m -1992 Olympics hamstring pull. Official result? DNF. But he did finish!
Because his father came and walked him through the last 100m.
Iconic picture of the true spirit – refusal to quit! The attitude of persistence.
We focus too often on the broken strings of our lives.
We don’t have a choice or control over them.
But we do have 1 string left.
Phil 2:5 – have the same attitude as Jesus.
Ivy MCR’s message – change your mind!
Be metamorphosed by God’s grace.
The one who we follow has walked the road of suffering and opposition and trial before us: He kept going
Because he knew we wouldn’t make it on our own.
So we can know that we will make it – if we walk with Him.