Anyone who has gone to the gym and wanted to gain muscle has heard the saying “no pain, no gain.” Trainers will tell you that if you want to strengthen and build your muscles you must put tension on them. They have to work harder than normal. At the time you get fatigued and think to yourself that you can’t go on any further. But at the end of the workout you feel great. Even then next day you are feeling pretty good although you might be a little sore. However, anyone who has done serious weight lifting knows that by the second day, the day you are suppose to work the same group of muscles again, the soreness has really set in. For many people they decide they don’t want to push through the pain and lift weights that day. Sometimes we even come up with excuses to not lift weights that day such as, “I don’t want to hurt myself” or “I don’t want to push myself to hard,” and other excuses. The real reason is we are sore and we know that if we start lifting weights that it is going to be hard. But if we are ever going to get stronger and build more muscle we must push through the soreness. That got me to thinking about our relationship with Christ.
James 1:2-4 says, “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.” Did you catch that? James told us to rejoice over tension in our life because it is working for our good. If you ask the average Christian, they will say they want to grow in their faith. However, if you ask that same Christian do you want to go through difficult times and they are going to tell you “no.” However, it is impossible in the plan of God for you to grow and not go through difficulty. Just like you need to lift on the second day even though you are really sore to build muscle, we all need to go through difficult times in life for God to grow our faith. Neither one of those scenarios are fun, but they are necessary if we are going to grow in physical and spiritual fitness. I heard a pastor say one time, “You can’t stay where you are and go with God at the same time.” Every morning we must get up and decide, are we going with God today or are we ok where we are at? I know the pain you are feeling is real, I know the anxiety it causes to follow a God you have never seen to a place you don’t know, but you must decide is the reward of knowing and growing in Jesus Christ worth more to you than any temporary pain you may experience? That is the thing about lifting weights on the second day, once your muscles get warmed up you are fine and you are glad that you pushed through it. You just have to decide are you going to push through and endure until the end or not. This principle is true in our walk with Christ as well. God will give you the strength the push through, but you must make up your mind as the old hymn say “Wherever He leads I’ll God.”
I pray for us all to have strength to push through today that we may be stronger in our walk tomorrow!
By His grace and through His strength may we live for Him