“Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.” (James 1:12)
We’ve all seen it: a young athlete, less talented than some of his peers and rarely playing on the field or court, nevertheless devotes himself to grueling discipline and practice. Why does he do it? Perhaps he does so for the sheer joy of it, or because he wants the camaraderie of a team.
In the Church, we know that we are less equipped than our Savior to endure tests of faith. Only one man remained steadfast; only one received the crown of life. Yet now He has promised to share that victory with us. Indeed, He even promises that whoever becomes like Him in His death (no worldly success there!) will become like Him also in His resurrection.
So why wouldn’t we, assured of His victory for our sake, not endure great hardship and discipline for the sake of this Man? Why wouldn’t we, like less talented but aspiring athletes, take up the rigor of Christian way for the sheer joy of it, as friends and comrades of our Lord?
LET US PRAY: Grant me, O Lord, the patience to endure in faith whatever test I must face, not looking to my own strength of will or mind, but only to Your suffering and merit. Amen
Pastor Steven K. Gjerde