Friends! Anybody else on the hamster wheel this week? Can’t quite catch up on that sleep that evaporated into the night? Dozing at the ole desk?
This week we’ll look at a couple of examples we do not want to emulate which I pray will motivate us toward a good finish… in spite of our not-so-friendly fatigue…
Recently John and I were blessed to hear Jonathan Pennington speak on the life of King David. Our “take home” was DO NOT FADE. (Avoid fading, or EVADE A FADE.)
Jonathan showed us in 2 Samuel when King David was somewhere between sixty and seventy, he became passive, losing his initiative, no longer active nor whole-hearted in his endeavors. Checkout his parenting skills (or lack thereof) in 2 Samuel as well as his other sinful acts which came with consequences, chapters 11-24, for starters… David was fading. (But don’t miss his repentance in chapter 22 and Psalm 51, plus we know David was a man after God’s own heart…very simply he was human just like you and me.)
Jonathan also reminded us of Eli, Samuel’s father who didn’t discipline his other two sons, who are dubbed “wicked” in the Bible. “But Eli’s sons wouldn’t listen to their father, for the Lord was already planning to put them to death.” (1 Samuel 2:25) Eli lacked the same umph to discipline his sons that David did. Eli was fading.
This word, “fade”, ricocheted between our ears, and other friends of ours afterwards, all of us agreeing we do not want to fade into the background as we get older. We want to be very present in the lives of our children and grandchildren.
DANGER WILL ROBINSON! We do NOT want to do anything of the sort!
I love a Grandfather’s Prayer that says, “I ask God most often that we would be an unbroken line of Christians until Christ returns.”
Let’s hold Deuteronomy 4:9 tightly in our hearts,
How exactly, you may be asking, are we to evade a fade? Seems Jonathan and author and pastor Erwin Raphael McManus are on the same page, armed with help, just for us. Erwin’s just written a killer convicting book, The Last Arrow—Save Nothing for the Next Life.
Ten for ten of Erwin’s chapter equip us readers to be “battle ready.” (A few favorites are: “Save Nothing for the Next Life”, “Refuse to Stay Behind”, “Act Like Your Life Depends on It.”) He says,
“My intention for this book is that you would
That you would NEVER SETTLE,
That you would SAVE NOTHING FOR THE NEXT LIFE.”
“Existence is a slow death;
Mediocrity is like quicksand that slowly consumes you and sucks the life out of you…
WHAT WILL IT TAKE TO CREATE IN YOU A SENSE OF URGENCY?”
Yes, well that will wake one up, huh? What makes this book so compelling is Erwin prefaces it by sharing that while he was doing the final edits, he received the news he had cancer. Given that perspective, we readers hang tighter to the message, inspired to, in a nutshell, “buck up.” Stay in the race…
Need encouragement to evade a fade? Be determined to ask the Lord daily to help you instill faith in your children and grandchildren, extending that line of Christians…making it endless!
2 Timothy 4:7-8 shows us what it looks like to finish well:
Press on, dear friends.
Evade a fade!
‘Til next time!