Tuesday, September 10, 2013

September 10

2 Corinthians 11:16-33

16 I repeat: Let no one take me for a fool. But if you do, then tolerate me just as you would a fool, so that I may do a little boasting. 17 In this self-confident boasting I am not talking as the Lord would, but as a fool. 18 Since many are boasting in the way the world does, I too will boast. 19 You gladly put up with fools since you are so wise! 20 In fact, you even put up with anyone who enslaves you or exploits you or takes advantage of you or puts on airs or slaps you in the face. 21 To my shame I admit that we were too weak for that!
Whatever anyone else dares to boast about—I am speaking as a fool—I also dare to boast about. 22 Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they Abraham’s descendants? So am I. 23 Are they servants of Christ? (I am out of my mind to talk like this.) I am more. I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. 24 Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. 27 I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked. 28 Besides everything else, I face daily the pressure of my concern for all the churches. 29 Who is weak, and I do not feel weak? Who is led into sin, and I do not inwardly burn?
30 If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness. 31 The God and Father of the Lord Jesus, who is to be praised forever, knows that I am not lying. 32 In Damascus the governor under King Aretas had the city of the Damascenes guarded in order to arrest me. 33 But I was lowered in a basket from a window in the wall and slipped through his hands.
How do you "do life"?
There certainly are places and peoples in the world who must endure unbelievable trouble just to read the Word of God, to speak His Name publicly, or to teach others about Him.
But most of us know nothing of that kind of Christian walk.
there is a deeper walk with the Lord Jesus Christ that will place us in circumstances that may not reflect the difficulties of public persecution, but may indeed bring hardship to our lives.
Taking a strong stand, holding out the Truth of the word of God to those around us, can be a test of our endurance.
We speak out for what God considers to be right and honorable and we are made to look like small minded fools.
We speak out for those who are abandoned or abused by society and we are looked upon as being "do-gooders", ready to be taken advantage of at every turn.
We speak out for a life of hope, walking by the Spirit and seeking His will in all we do, giving first place to the Lord, praying and believing HIM,  and we are dis-counted... seen as being out of touch with the harsh realities of life.

Are you most willing to take this task of Endurance seriously?
How will you "do life"?
Hold onto the One who gave everything to hold onto you!


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