The secret to endurance and victory
By Stan Toler
When it comes to navigation, the great patriarch, Abraham, was a lot like Christopher Columbus on his journey to a new land. He didn’t know where he was going when he started out, and he didn’t know where he was when he got there. By faith Abraham, when called to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going (Heb. 11:8).
Abraham may not have known WHERE he was going, but he knew WHY. God had called him. God’s plan was now Abraham’s purpose. And spiritual purpose was a great motivator in the life of the man who was called “a friend of God.”
Though we are busier than ever, many of us live our lives rather aimlessly at times—even though our intentions are noble. At work, we desire to be the consummate professional. At home, we seek to be the ultimate spouse or parent. At church, we are the devout believer. In spite of our involvement, it often seems that there’s something missing in our lives. We lack power.
A consecrated life is a life devoted to a single purpose. Like Abraham, it settles on God’s plan, no matter the consequence. What may we expect from such a consecrated life? What is the result of consecrating our life to Christ, making His will our main objective?
In a word, power.
That power rises from an increased focus. When you understand the big picture, it’s easier to put the little things in place. A consecrated life is focused on serving God. That makes every decision—from vocational choices to moral decisions—much easier to make. Consecration brings the power of focus.
That power also produces great endurance. There is no more noble cause than Christ’s—no more valid reason to persevere in spite of pain or persecution. When your life has been laid at the feet of the Master, when His cross is squared firmly across your shoulders, you will have the strength to face life even at its worst. Insults are easier to bear, sacrifices easier to make.
Consecration brings the power of endurance.
That power brings certain victory. That term may be as obsolete as an Edsel at times, but “victory” is still the believer’s greatest incentive. Paul put the promise in writing: Thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him (2 Cor. 2:14). The consecrated person is a victorious soldier for Christ—even before the battle begins. Whether the struggle is against temptation in our own life or the struggle against the forces of spiritual darkness in the world, the believer with a single focus is able to endure. Consecration brings victory.
The Scriptures bear it out. The writer of Hebrews mentions other “Hall of Fame” Christians who had consecrated themselves to God. Those who had placed their lives on the altar of devotion and let them burn; others who were hopelessly devoted to their God. What was the result in their lives? Just listen.
And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets, who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions, quenched the fury of the flames, and escaped the edge of the sword; whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies (Heb. 11:32-34).
And there is one name missing from that list. Yours. By faith, you, too, may become one of these of whom the world was not worthy. By faith, you, too, may be consumed by a passion for God that burns away every thought, every motive that is not focused on His will. By faith, you may endure any hardship, achieve any victory. By faith, you may prevail.
That’s the power of a consecrated life.
Copyright © 2012 by Stan A. Toler
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