Marine Corps Base Quantico -- “Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we do not lose heart.” (2 Corinthians 4:1, NKJV).
There are times I feel like giving up. I’m tempted to give up on people and lose hope in the middle of a stressful situation. A person who did not follow through with a commitment gives me pause. Should I give up on them or give them a second chance? Grace and forgiveness offer second chances. Sometimes environments at work or home are hard and unrewarding. They make us feel alone and unappreciated. Thoughts of doubt breech through our resolve and creep into the forefront of our mind. You may think, “Should I stay the course or look for another job? How do I fix this problem with family?” When motivation is spiritual in nature, we are focused to endure when others exit. Persevering faith never gives up, but always gives in to God’s will.
Jesus faced fierce opposition from cynical critics. He was unfairly labeled an enemy of the political and religious authorities. He was falsely accused and suffered under an unjust legal system. Our Lord and Savior survived physical pain, public humiliation and betrayal from those who had followed Him when the times were good. Jesus even felt distance from His heavenly Father when the crushing weight of mankind’s sin was heaped on Him on the cross. However, His love endured. Christ never gave up for the greater good of His sacrifice for sin’s forgiveness.
“Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” (2 Corinthians 5:20-21).
Are you tired? Do you feel like giving up? If so, fix your eyes on Jesus. See His great love for you and let go of those circumstances that cause pain. Consider the pain Christ went through for you and ask Him to heal your heart by His grace and mercy. Pray to the One who brings you wholeness, so you can pray for the one who breaks your heart. Never give up on God for He has your best interest in mind. Mind your business and trust Him to take care of business. You can give up on someone only after your heavenly Father gives up on them. Love never gives up!
Most of all, stay true to God’s call to love and be loved. The more we empty ourselves, the more God’s love fills our souls. The Lord always loves. To love is to give. Jesus has given that great and wonderful love to you so you could forward it to those who most challenge you and are difficult. Trust in Him to work his graces through you. By God’s mercy we love by giving an agitator the benefit of the doubt. We love people to the point of their potential, not where they are stuck at the point of their sin. Never give up on others—trust the Spirit is growing them into who He created. We never give up, because Jesus never gave up!
“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:1-2).