Try, Try Again

But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed. – 2 Corinthians 4:7-9.

From the Jews five times I received forty stripes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods; once I was stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the deep; in journeys often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils of my own countrymen, in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; in weariness and toil, in sleeplessness often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness – besides the other things, what comes upon me daily: my deep concern for all the churches. – 2 Corinthians 11:24-28.

In South Korea, Cha Sa-soon has failed the written driving test 775 times. She has been trying for about four years to pass the test hoping that she will be able to start a trucking business. Even though she is 68-years-old, and has spent close to $7,000 on application fees, Cha is determined to continue her quest for the truck driving license. Cha believes that she may pass the test next time, and so she will try again, and again if necessary.

To be honest if I had failed the written driving test that many times I would probably have stopped trying. Actually I would have given up long before, maybe after ten or eleven tries. However, I will never give up on living the Christian life. I sometimes fail miserably, and sometimes I am discouraged, but I know that God is still God. However, I do know people who have walked away from the Christian life. Some of them claim they do not believe in God any more. Others say they believe in God but they no longer live like they believe. They have given up. They have been defeated and are having fellowship with the demons (1 Corinthians 10:19-21).

The apostle Paul could have thrown up his hands in defeat. His life did not improve after becoming a Christian. His life rapidly went downhill with an increasing number of problems and trials that were thrust upon him. Bad things happened repeatedly to Paul, but he continued on. Sometimes the doors were closed but new doors were opened. Paul never stopped believing, never stopped living the triumphant Christian life. Paul lived his life in victory no matter what the circumstances surrounding him may have been like.

What about you? Have you been defeated? Are you no longer living like a believer? Will you let the devil and his demons rejoice that you are defeated? Rise up! Stand up! Throw off the devil’s yoke! Determine in your heart that you will live for what is right. Determine in your heart that you will live as a believer no matter what life may send your way. Try, try again for it is the way of victory! There will come a day when there will be no more tears, no more pain, no more war, no more death, no more fear – until then let us fight on to the very end, knowing that our Lord lives within us and He has won the ultimate victory. Each step we take with the Lord is a step lived in victory. Surely, the angels rejoice with each step forward that we take as determined victorious believers. Try, try again and live the life of victory!

(Times have gotten tough in the United States with almost 700,000 people losing their jobs just last week. During these tough times will we turn to God or turn away from Him?)

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