Saturday, February 02, 2008
The Crown of Life
"Blessed is the man who perseveres." James 1:12
James tells us that if we hold up under pressure and stay the course when others are dropping out, we receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him. Did you catch that? It's the crown of life -- that means we get to wear it here, not when we get to heaven. There are plenty of other crowns for that ocassion.
One of the most stirring examples of persevering until the crown is given is found in the story of a man we all know. His first attempt at business failed. He tried politics and within only one year failed there also. He went back to the business sector for yet another try, and failed again. That’s three failures in three years.
He struggled for the next two years and then suffered a nervous breakdown. After taking two years to recover, he tried once again in the political world and was defeated in his bid to be elected as Speaker of the House.Two years later he made his bid to be appointed as the Elector and was again defeated.
Three years after this he ran for a seat in Congress and was defeated. He waited five years to run for office again, and was again defeated. He spent the next seven years as a relative unknown in the private sector and then ran yet again for a political office -- this time in the Senate. Again, he was defeated. The following year he was nominated by his party to be the candidate for Vice-President, but was defeated along with his running mate in the general election.
After two more years he tried again for the Senate seat but again was defeated. Then, after another two years later, in 1860, Abraham Lincoln was elected as the 16th President of the United States!
Twenty four years of sheer endurance! What if he had quit twenty three years into the process?! It would have been a great loss to everyone. And why on earth should you quit – seeing you have already come this far?
Stay with it, my friend; there is a crown of life awaiting you. And we will celebrate your success!