By Guy Anthony
April 16, 2020
Passages of the day: Click HERE to read today’s passages.
Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 27 years, and he says he learned humility, patience, and tolerance there. In addition to forced labor, he also maintained a strict workout regimen of stationary running (45 minutes), fingertip push-ups (100), sit-ups (200), deep knee-bends (50) and various other calisthenics. For many of those years, he had no practical hope of release, but he persevered nonetheless. He didn’t give up.
Such persistence is what we find in today’s readings. God persisted in reminding Joshua three separate times to give no allotment of land to the tribe of Levi. God himself would be their allotment. The widow in Luke persisted in seeking justice from the unjust judge. Jesus teaches us that persistent prayer will be heard. And the psalmist persists in crying out for restoration, revival, and salvation.
I often feel least like persisting when that is precisely what is needed. Our current crisis overwhelms us with fear, fatigue and weakened faith. In my own strength (or lack thereof), I would run, if there were only a place left to run to.
So how do we persist and never give up? A clue is in the last portion of the Luke passage. Jesus says: “I tell you the truth, anyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it.” God brings His strength, and we bring childlike humility. Together, we can walk in the will of Him who never gives up.
Yes, the Lord pours down his blessings. Our land will
yield its bountiful harvest. Righteousness goes as a
herald before him, preparing the way for his steps.
— Psalm 18:12-13