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"And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD." [Joshua 24:15]
Are you stubborn? You may have been told so in the past [or even the present!].
Joshua was a stubborn man. He challenged an entire nation to choose between God and Satan, but whatever their decision was he wasn't going to change his mind. He had determined a long time ago that he was going to serve the Living God. That stubbornness let him stand in the minority [but correct] opinion when he returned with the other spies from searching out Canaan. At that time the entire nation turned against him [and Caleb and Moses]. Didn't matter. He was stubborn in the things of God. Nothing or no one was going to move him out of the will of God! Like a donkey he stuck in his heels and stood firm. No budging this man of God...not with all the carrots of the world.
How about us? We can be stubborn too, but are we stubborn in the right things? When it comes time to choose, when the majority is wrong, when the pressure is on, are we stubborn for God or do we meekly follow whatever carrot is held in front of our nose? [Maybe we hold out for a special carrot?] The point is: Have we decided in our spirits that we will serve the Living God and no force in hell or on earth is going to move us from that decision?
What are some things that can try to budge us from the things of God?
In some countries it is physical persecution. Some people are literally being beaten, tortured, raped, or murdered for their faith. It is happening today. I know the book "Tortured For Christ" by Richard Wurmbrand is a bit out-dated, but it is excellent reading to understand the issues faced by the suffering church and a look at current sites shows it still goes on now. Even in Western countries people have suffered for their faith by an abusive spouse or friends, been ridiculed, fired, or been passed over for promotions for their stand for God. But they are stubborn for God, they will not move from the purposes of God.
Sometimes it is sin in our own lives which is a tool of Satan to move us from serving God. We all fail, we all sin. Sometimes in trying to conquer a specific sin in our lives we fail again and again. Do we give up in despair. Do we, like Adam and Eve, run and hide from God? The ONLY God-honouring action when we sin is to run TO Him. Take responsibility, repent, be forgiven, be wrapped in His arms of love. Never let a failure drive you away from God. Be stubborn for God. Have the attitude: "I hate sin. I will fight sin in my life on every level and in every way. I will lose some battles, but I will not lose the war for Christ has already won it. And nothing is going to make me forsake God, not even my own weaknesses."
There are many things which can turn us from God or make us resentful of Him: Finances [or the lack of them], sickness, depression, being hurt by Christians, feeling abandoned by God, unfaithful spouse or children, etc. I encourage you today: Be a donkey! Dig your heels in and refused to be budged from the things of God. [May sure you are being stubborn for God and not against Him!] Let nothing, nothing shake you of your conviction.
Final note: In being stubborn for God I do not mean we have to be rude, offensive, or abusive about it. We are to have a quiet stubbornness in our own spirits that nothing is going to move us from Jesus Christ. It doesn't matter what the majority is going to do, it doesn't matter even what they may do to us, the cost is irrelevant, we shall not be moved. End Of Story.