Consider it a great joy, my brothers, whenever you experience various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. But endurance must do its complete work, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking nothing.–James 1:2-4
The Oscoda High School football team cancelled their season’s last five games as a result of going 0-4 and not scoring a point. I know going winless and scoreless stings, but my heart hurts thinking someone gave up on those athletes. I think about the possible victories they will never experience—not on-the-field victories, but the life victories they will miss. I guess they never heard the Winston Churchill quote, “Never give in—never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in . . .”
As athletes, we learn to never quit. I imagine 20 years from now those athletes will wish their coaches had not given up. They will remember that season their entire life. Even if they continued scoreless, it could have been a defining moment for them. It is in defeat that we learn the most. In the strain, God shapes and molds us.
Christ did not quit on the cross. Paul did not give up preaching when thrown into jail. Daniel did not stop praying in the lions’ den. It is easy to give up when it gets tough; but when we press on, God is glorified. Our goal is to keep our eyes on Jesus that we may finish strong on and off the field.
1. When do you feel like quitting?
2. When was the last time you stuck it out when you wanted to quit?
3. Who in the Bible quit? Who persevered?
4. How can you encourage others not to quit?
Extra Reading: Hebrews 12:1-2; 1 Peter 1:6-7
Father, help me when things get tough and I want to quit. Show me the blessing waiting for me. It is hard to be faithful during pain. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit, so others will see You in me during times of trouble. Amen.