Tuesday, August 17, 2021

A Formula For Victory

Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Remember the former things of old; for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me… Isaiah 46:9

…rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer, Romans 12:12

A Formula For Victory

hope + patience + prayer = victory (Keith Warren; Worthy Living)

This simple equation is a formula for victory. But it is also a cycle, not a vicious one, but a lifesaving one. There is no way out of tribulation in this life, and without hope there would be no persevering in tribulation. Without hope, we quit. We lay down. We give up. 

But because of the faith we have in God, we have hope. Hope comes from faith and our faith is fueled by victories – or the promises God has fulfilled. 

There is a reason we are told to remember the things He has done, for us and for others, all the way back to Adam and Eve. This world can make us forget our faith quickly, but even the weight of tribulation bearing down cannot squash hope that is grounded in faith and fueled by God’s proven faithfulness (victories!). 

Because we know that God is true to His promises, and that He has delivered us and proven Himself to be faithful over and over again, we can have hope, persevere, and pray all the way to victory.

For us, victory can be the catch. We must be willing to accept God’s victory in our lives, or there is no victory at all. It may not be the victory we hoped for, but we can believe and trust that He will give us the absolute best victory for our lives. He knows better than we do what is best for us and what we need. We often cannot see what we really need, but sometimes we choose to ignore what we really need over what we really want. Choosing what we want over what we need will get us in trouble every time. 

Choosing something we need over a want is a grown-up decision, much like choosing a side salad over French fries. (No judgement - preaching to myself) In Romans 12, Paul is telling us how to live in “grown-up”faith. The Christians he was talking to were still taking baby steps, but they were learning and growing in their faith. Paul had given them so much information in these twelve chapters and they were soaking it all up. 

Some days we are still taking baby steps, and that is okay, as long as we don’t park there. We need to be exercising our “grown-up” faith to grow up in Him. The older I get, the more important making good choices are, and the less I want to make unwise choices. I have learned the wisdom in accepting what God offers over what I think I want. His victories in the lives of His children are the very best victories. These are the victories that spur faith, which gives us hope, giving us the patience to persevere and pray all the way through tribulation to victory! 

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