If Thou Faint In The Day Of Adversity…
By: Brian A. Yeager
The Lord expects His people to be strong. Notice: “But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint… Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong… Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might… Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus” (Isaiah 40:31, I Corinthians 16:13, Ephesians 6:10, and II Timothy 2:1).
Our strength needs to come from our Lord (Philippians 4:13). That is not to say that we will be supernaturally empowered. Rather, we will receive our strength from God when we produce spiritual fruit and grow in knowledge (Colossians 1:10-11). God has also provided us with brethren to help us be strong. You can also expect that faithful, strong brethren will work at supporting those who are weak (Romans 15:1 and I Thessalonians 5:14). If you are spiritually weak, do not expect some form of strength to fall out of Heaven and hit you on the head. Don’t pray some foolish prayer either. To be strong, you have to put in some work (Revelation 3:2).
Putting in work to become stronger in the faith is challenging when you are facing things that constantly seek to weaken you. When you study the Scriptures you see that Christians face situations of adversity (Hebrews 13:3). When facing adversity, we have to have enough faith to keep us strong through it. Notice these words from a Psalmist: “I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD” (Psalms 27:13-14). We also have to be realists in understanding that the challenges we face to our faith and spiritual strength are real challenges. We have no “walk in the park” in this life.
We Will Face Challenges
It is right to say that life in this world is challenging. Notice how the Lord communicates this to us: “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world… And to him they agreed: and when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name. And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ… Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God… For verily, when we were with you, we told you before that we should suffer tribulation; even as it came… For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake… For verily, when we were with you, we told you before that we should suffer tribulation; even as it came to pass, and ye know… So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure… If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us… Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution… For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully. For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps… I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ” (John 16:33, Acts 5:40-42, Acts 14:22, Philippians 1:29, I Thessalonians 3:4, II Thessalonians 1:4, II Timothy 2:12, II Timothy 3:12, I Peter 2:19-21, and Revelation 1:9).
The Scriptures quoted above are a very small sample of the Scriptures that could have been quoted to show us the challenges we’ll face in life. We will have adversity with our families (Matthew 10:34-37). We will face adversity from our governments (Matthew 10:16-18). Paul said he was troubled on every side (II Corinthians 4:8). That is our reality. How we deal with it, will show us how strong we are.
Fainting Is A Sign of Small Strength
Notice these inspired words of wisdom: “If thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength is small… The wicked flee when no man pursueth: but the righteous are bold as a lion” (Proverbs 24:10 and Proverbs 28:1). When you face trials, how will you handle it? When you face temptation, how will you handle it? If you fail, how will you rise back up? These are the tests of our strength.
As Christians, we should not become weary when we are doing what is right (Galatians 6:9). If you start to feel spiritual fatigue setting in, think about our Lord as an example of strength. In fact, that is exactly what the writer of the book of Hebrews said. Notice: “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience 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 is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds” (Hebrews 12:1-3).
We’re going to have trying days, months, years, etc. Let’s show our strength in those times of adversity by not fainting. Allow the tough times you go through to make you even stronger (Romans 5:1-4 and James 1:2-4). Stay strong by focusing on the fact that once you endure all that you have to go through you can look forward to the prize at the finish line (James 1:12). Don’t listen to the noise of the world around you that tells you it is okay to fail. Don’t listen to those who lower the standard of success. If you are a Christian, you are a child of God (I John 3:1-2). Act like it! Be strong. Be one of courage. Do not allow adversity to cause you to be weak.
Volume 14 – Issue 28 - March 30th, 2014