July 8, 2022
“In fact, when we were with you, we told you previously that we were going to suffer persecution, and as you know, it happened. For this reason, when I could no longer stand it...”
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“In fact, when we were with you, we told you previously that we were going to suffer persecution, and as you know, it happened. For this reason, when I could no longer stand it, I also sent to find out about your faith, fearing that the Tempter had tempted you and that our labor might be for nothing.” 1 Thessalonians 3:4-5
Reggie had no reason to be running college cross-country. I argued with him all the way to the signup table. Still, he signed his name on the “walk-on” list and turned away.
In high school, Reggie and I had been track & field competitors. I had obtained a scholarship while all the colleges passed him up. Even though he hadn’t worked out in over a year, he had observed my previous track season with envy. Bottom line, he thought he could beat me and earn a place on the team.
I actually wanted Reggie to succeed. I thought he had more raw talent than me, but he lacked the drive to win. Like I said, I tried to talk him out of it. I told him that running at the college level was harder than it looked.
The day arrived for our first practice. The coach blew a whistle, and off we went. The first week’s practices are always the most difficult. They’re designed to weed out the weaker runners. Five miles later, I returned to the starting point with the front pack. Then I stood by Coach until everyone crossed the line…no Reggie. The guys said he had fallen back and was “examining his lunch,” yawning in technicolor somewhere on the trail. He never came back.
I have met many young people who could have been successful in ministry, but nobody told them it would be so hard. Others were told but wouldn’t listen. Maybe you’re tired of hearing me say it, but living for the Lord can be challenging. If you expect to succeed on raw talent, you’re fooling yourself. God has designed us to run on a combination of His Spirit, Talent, and Discipline.
More than just warning you, I have determined to train alongside you. Hopefully, you find these daily Bible emails more inspirational than “desperational” (my word). I pray you will endure the discipline to obtain the prize!