“Because you have kept my word about patient endurance, I will keep you from the hour of trial that is coming on the whole world, to try those who dwell on the earth. I am coming soon. Hold fast what you have, so that no one may seize your crown.” Revelation [3:10]-11
God rewards those who patiently endure trials and persecution.
Marathon runners call it “hitting the wall”. It often occurs at around the 20-mile mark where the runner suddenly feels like they cannot go on. This is caused by the depletion of glycogen stores in the liver and muscles. And it has led to many a marathoner abandoning the race.
The Christian life is frequently portrayed as a race in the Bible. Not a 50-yard sprint, but a race that requires endurance. Jesus, in this letter, underscores this truth. To faithfully follow Him will demand perseverance in the face of trials, temptations, and in many instances, persecution.
This was true of the Christian community in Philadelphia. Having been shut out of the synagogue, the Jewish community, because of their unwillingness to deny Jesus, was patiently enduring the day to day reality of their decision to be faithful to Him.
Jesus reminds them of the multitude of blessings that await them. He mentions a crown. But more than that, He mentions Himself. He says, “I am coming soon.” Our reward is not a trophy to put on a shelf, nor a medal to hang around our necks, but ultimately, it is the joy of experiencing Christ in the way we were created to enjoy Him.
Today, are you fatigued? Discouraged? Are you about to “hit the wall” in your walk with Christ? Remember, He knows. He cares. And He is coming soon.
Dear Lord, help me to endure this trial with joy, as I await that day when I’ll see You face to face. Amen.