“It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness. The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him. The LORD is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him.” –Lamentations 3:22-25
As an encouragement to youth, Andrew Carnegie once said, “Think of yourself as on the threshold of unparalleled success. A whole, clear, glorious life lies before you. Achieve! Achieve!” On this early morning, I encourage you, dear reader in the summer, fall or winter of your life: “Think of yourself as on the threshold of unparalleled victory. A whole, clear, glorious, new day lies before you. Achieve! Achieve!”
To “achieve” is “to perform, or execute; to accomplish; to finish, or carry on to a final close. It is appropriately used for the effect of efforts made by the hand or bodily exertion, as deeds achieved by valor.” “Valor” refers to “strength of mind in regard to danger; that quality which enables a man to encounter danger with firmness; personal bravery; courage; intrepidity; prowess.” (Thank you, Mr. Webster.)
What dangers are awaiting you today? Where has satan laid his snares for you this day? Emboldened by the Word and strengthened by the example of our dear Saviour, we can march forward surrounded by the host of Heaven itself. (Psalm 34:7) Ours is to praise Him for the fresh start each day, for the unspoiled slate that He has wiped clean for us. Ours is to exert ourselves towards the doing of good, to the serving of others in the name of our Saviour, to conquer the foes within and without using the weapons He has given us: His Word and His love.Ours is to rejoice in the victory He will bring about.
Lamentations 3:40 says, “Let us search and try our ways, and turn again to the LORD.” Remember the newness of salvation? “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” (2 Cor. 5:17) Praise God for fresh starts, for new days and a bundle of new mercies to go with them all! 1 John 1:9 is a great encourager, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” With such a blessed hope, how can we trudge about life with an air of defeat? We have the promises of God that are renewed every day.
Our life is a gift. Each moment can be used to further our goals and His glory. Live as the victor that you are. Discipline yourself to persevere through the difficulties of the day. Don’t give up or in to satan’s annoyances or attacks. It only makes sense that when one’s focus is set clearly and all of one’s efforts are striving towards the goal, that victory will be its conclusion. As stated by Russell Conwell, “Of course, such a spirit brought victory.” His was a life of perseverance. When asked what his favorite occupation was, Mr. Conwell promptly and heartily replied, “Living.”
Dear Christian, Live! Don’t just exist, LIVE! Live life with all its ups and downs, with all its pain and pleasure. Make all things subject unto your purpose. Submit yourself to God and to His perfect will for your life and live, live, live! We are to be kings and priests here on this earth, doing the Lord’s will at home or abroad. Circumstances are merely the tests and trials put before us to see how easily we will be diverted from our task, how easily our focus on Christ will be lost. These “rocks” in our fields that must be cleared to plant the crops, are but the tools employed to bring about in us patience, self-control, sacrifice of personal desires, and the ability to overcome obstacles by persistent, steady labor.
The steady tolling of your life should be that of praise to God for all that He is and for all that He has done and for all that He is doing in your life. Keep your heart in tune by this continual praise. Enlarge and broaden your mind by continual reading; first and foremost by the reading of Scripture. Secondly, by the many useful and instructive books that cause you to see the beauty in words; in people; and in the magnificent world that surrounds you daily, that is trampled negligently by unseeing eyes and that sings a symphony that cannot be heard by stopped ears. Learn by reading the lives of those that have prevailed in life and have truly lived, that, like them, there is something for you to accomplish and achieve in this life as well.
John 10:10, “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” Dearest saint of God, remember, with God all things are possible.
A thought on reading by Samuel Smiles: “The great and good do not die even in this world. Embalmed in books, their spirits walk abroad. The book is a living voice. It is an intellect to which one still listens.”
Knowing this, John Lubbock makes a wonderful observation: “The choice of books, like that of friends, is a serious duty. We are responsible for what we read as what we do.”