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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Commendation for Faith

March 7

(Hebrews 11:1-2 NIV) "Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. {2} This is what the ancients were commended for."

(Hebrews 11:32-40 NIV) "And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets, {33} who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions, {34} 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. {35} Women received back their dead, raised to life again. Others were tortured and refused to be released, so that they might gain a better resurrection. {36} Some faced jeers and flogging, while still others were chained and put in prison. {37} They were stoned ; they were sawed in two; they were put to death by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated-- {38} the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, and in caves and holes in the ground. {39} These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. {40} God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect."

Faith is like a coin -- it has two sides. One side moves mountains and does heroic things. It produces miracles and wins great victories. This is the side of faith most of us desire. It’s the side of faith that gets the most publicity. The other side of faith is for when the mountain doesn’t move. It’s for when the mountain falls on us. It’s for when evil seems to triumph and the victory does not come. This side of faith doesn’t boast of prosperity -- it endures persecution. This faith is for the hard times, not the high times. It’s the faith of pain, not pleasure. This faith won’t ever build large cathedrals, sell books, or fund television ministries here on Earth. But it is an extremely heroic faith -- a faith that is highly valued by God. It is a faith that will win us high commendation in Heaven -- commendation as great as those who moved mountains. Lord, help us to have a faith like this. -- Friar Tuck’s Word of the Day

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