Pain refines or defines. I saw a shirt the read “Pain is weakness leaving the body!” I like it.
I read prolifically about the SEALs. My friend pushed me and now I’m hooked and am now reading, Navy SEALs: Their Untold Story, by Dick Couch and William Doyle. What are my words? Big, bold, controlled fear, sweat, blood, and no quit or crying! Just do it and let nothing stand in your way. These are my men, my heroes. Hey football is great but pales.
I see this in the prophets, John the Baptist, Jesus and his disciples and many others to today where many live this life of courage yet there are still too few. Do not get me wrong, I have not arrived.
I’ve suffered much for the Gospel under the hand of friends, family, Christians, brothers and sisters in Christ, and the community and let’s give a shout out to Lucifer, our useful nemesis.
I started the faith in struggle. Satan was set to destroy me from the beginning. It started in college and the spiritual pressure drove me to consider ending my life. I left the Way for 5 years to return to the same fight. He was waiting to dissuade and destroy me. The second time was my first act of valor prompted by the Spirit, I resolved “No matter how bad it gets, I will not quit.” This began my salvation.
I have been taken to the edge of my faith many times. The Lord has willed it. Nothing happens to a saint without expressed permission of our loving God. Of course some would question Him, but He is beautiful and perfect in all His ways. This is not trite as it may be from some, I carry the scars of his training. I am a Christian “seal”. He has made me one.
The first scripture I memorized was James 1:2-4; “James 1:2-4, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”
I got it as much as I could at the time, it wasn’t an intellectual but experiential obstacle. Only those who have been trained by this and have overcome for many years can truly understand it. It is reserved for the faithful elite and is used to destroy the arrogant neophyte or at least has and mostly created a barren religious class. These are scourge of the saints, they truly are Job’s counselors.
I did not like it but I had to drive a new perspective in to my heart, one high on God’s value system. It was his way and technique to weed out the weak. Yes, the weak. Only those who trust him shall be saved. Those who do not walk in this grace and will not humble themselves before His chastening hand will not be saved. You believe Him for the resurrection from the dead and not His wise discipline?
He is a jealous God. He will have us, all of us! He is passionate and wonderful; in all the bad he has something wonderful. Wrestle with him, he will have his way! Gratefully we submit…