Do You Have Quiet Strength?
Go ahead, smile you are at the end of a long week. You have probably faced at least one individual this week who affected you negatively in some way. Did you get irritated? Did you almost lose your cool? No, that was last week. We do not always have smooth days, yet somehow Friday comes and it is alright. You are going home and you won’t have to worry about a thing concerning work until Monday. Today you may be saying TGIF! (Thank God it’s Friday).
A long time ago someone experienced a week none of us would have liked to endure. He was betrayed, like some of us may have felt this week. He was abandoned by His friends, that may have happened this week too. Did you call someone to talk to them and felt as if they had ran out on you? He endured verbal abuse. How many times did someone curse in your presence and offended you in the spirit this week? All the curse words he heard were aimed directly at Him. He was beaten, spat on, and given physical labor to do; labor He could not possibly have completed on His own. You may have been a little overworked, maybe a lot, but you were not beaten or jeered the way He was.
Most of the really bad things happened to Him on Friday. He looked forward to the weekend, just like you have been doing. The only difference is, you get to go home, but He still had work to do. A friend gave Him a place to stay over the weekend, because he knew He did not have a place to stay until He finished the job. He never quit however; He stayed around to finish the job. It was supposed to be completed by Sunday, He had a deadline to meet. With a little help from a friend He got to the work site and endured all the physical hardship a man should endure and some, a man never has endured before. He did this, because He believed in what He was doing; He was doing it to honor God so He did it with all His might. The job took its toll on Him and those who were in charge were very cruel. You may think your bosses are cruel, however I assure you, He went through much worse than you did in one day, than you could ever go through in one week. He died trying to finish the job, but just before He died He triumphantly said, “it is finished”.
By now, you may have realized that the person I am writing of is Jesus. He endured a week like no other. He did it because He loves each and every one of us. He did it because He loves His Father and chose to honor Him and sacrifice His life for our sins. He did not quit, even though as the week went on it got harder. He was accused and did not say a word. When someone said or did something this past week that you did not like, what did you do? He had a friend who helped Him to carry His cross. Thank God for your friends who helped you to carry yours this past week. He had a friend who gave up His tomb so He could leave His grave clothes as a sign of His victory over death. Thank God that those grave clothes represent yours as well as my sins, because He died for all of us.
Look back on your week again. Would you endure one like it again, to honor the week He endured for you? Would you silently bear a snide remark or some form of persecution for Him?
We have a challenge as Christians to rise above what we face in this world. It may be difficult, but not impossible. In Jesus we have an example of the character and integrity we should display as we go through life. It is my prayer that like Jesus we will endure the challenges of this world. Let us rise above the negative things we face at the hand of others, just like He rose above death and the grave. Let us lift Him up from this earth as we end our work week so that he can “draw us unto Him”.
May He bless you richly, may your weekend be a time of restoration and praise. May your spirit rise as you join others to worship Him this weekend. And like Him, may you return to the world victorious on Monday. God Bless you, and keep you, as you remember the Holy sacrifice of the King of Kings. I encourage you in the name of the risen Lamb, His Royal Highness, Jesus Christ, the First and the Last, Prince of Peace, Conquering Lion of the tribe of Judah. May He bless and keep you eternally. ~ Shane Patterson
Suggested Prayer: Lord Jesus, I thank you for your sacrifice of love through which I received salvation, and the example you left me on how to face a hostile world. Give strength to rise above the challenges that come my way. Help me to live a life of example so others may see you in me. Thank you for you love. Amen.