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Monday, April 7, 2014

The Promise at the Summit

“Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (James 1:4, NIV).

It's another Monday. You now face the work week, or other duties that beckon. Your day may sing with promise, but most likely little problems and irritations will arise. It's life. It's inevitable. Don't dwell on the problems that come up each day. Recognize each struggle for what it is: a lesson to carry you further to the goal. When you climb a mountain and concentrate on the hardship of each step, you never see the beautiful reward waiting for you at the summit.

Don't dwell on the emotional pain that hits you when problems overwhelm your heart. That is where you will be defeated. Guard your heart. Regard each problem that arises as a springboard to reach the top. Keep your eyes on your goal, and then as you climb, each step will become another solid foundation of growth. If you consider each step as a means to carry you to the promise at the peak, your climb will not bring despair, but great hope.

What is the promise at the summit? The fruit of the Spirit, active and alive in your life. Your life will radiate the love of God. His joy will reign no matter what you face. His peace will calm your heart through hard times. Patience with circumstances and with others will pervade your mind and spirit. Kindness will be the first thing extended to all in your life. God's goodness will overflow from your heart, and faithfulness will be your promise that is fulfilled to others. Gentleness shall be the power of Holy Spirit under control in your life, guiding you wisely and carefully in your relationships. Self-control will define your life in all areas. You will have surrendered your life completely to the control of the Holy Spirit.

Does this sound unattainable? It is attainable, or He would have not revealed the promised fruit in Galatians 5:22-23. Each problem you overcome and each step up the mountain will bring great reward. Persevere and never give up. Face each step head on, and overcome each obstacle.  “Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (James 1:4, NIV).  Peter put in like this. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:8, NIV). I don’t know about you, but I will keep on climbing the mountain!

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