All Scripture references are taken from the NET2 translation.
“I have great joy in the Lord because now at last you have again expressed your concern for me. (Now I know you were concerned before but had no opportunity to do anything.) 11 I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content in any circumstance. 12 I have experienced times of need and times of abundance. In any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of contentment, whether I go satisfied or hungry, have plenty or nothing. 13 I am able to do all things through the one who strengthens me. 14 Nevertheless, you did well to share with me in my trouble.” Philippians 4:10-14 NET2.
Paul is not expressing concern about himself when he expressed thanksgiving to those who had shared his problems, but was encouraging everyone to share one another’s burdens. Paul’s letters were never written to gain something for himself, but rather he wrote to help the people to whom he addressed them to secure their faith in Jesus Christ. The Keys, then, to standing firm in Christ Jesus are found in faith and well-doing for the glory of Jesus Christ.
Phrases for Encouragement
One of the phrases that I heard my father say when things became difficult is, “I must dig in and get my footing.” I also recall watching the linemen ‘in the trenches’ before there was artificial turf, when there was real grass for a playing surface, as they would literally ‘dig the toes of their cleats into the turf for more resistance, to get a foothold for the next play. Phrases are important, are words of encouragement when facing difficulty and that is true from the Word of God. There are multiple Scriptures for this very thing…for encouragement in the faith toward Jesus Christ.
“But you, brothers and sisters, do not grow weary in doing what is right.” 2 Thessalonians 3:13.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, we must get rid of every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and run with endurance the race set out for us, keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith. For the joy set out for him he endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:1-2.
“Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is an eternal God, the Creator of the whole earth. He does not get tired or weary; there is no limit to His wisdom. He gives strength to those who are tired, to the ones who lack power, He gives renewed energy. Even youths get tired and weary; even strong young men clumsily stumble. But those who wait for the Lord’s help find renewed strength; they rise up as if they had eagles’ wings, they run without growing weary, they walk without getting tired.” Isaiah 40:28-30.
Resisting and Overcoming the Devil
Recalling those hours before Jesus was to be crucified, He was walking with His disciples through the Garden and decided to go off by Himself to pray, to seek counsel from the Father, “When he got up from prayer, he came to the disciples and found them sleeping, exhausted from grief. So he said to them, “Why are you sleeping? Get up and pray that you will not fall into temptation!” Luke 22:45-46. No doubt, we are encountering substantial weariness, frustration and, perhaps, boredom from staying cooped up in our houses. And these hours do give Satan an opportunity to present all manner of temptation to us, but we should pray to the Father in order to be able to stand against the onslaught of the Tempter. He does not sleep and we must not sleep in the spiritual sense. We must be strong in these days of possible evil activity.
Jesus is not simply our Savior, Jesus is our Lord and Master, King of everything and by His Spirit we are empowered to be able to resist the Devil so that he will flee from us.
Jesus is Lord!!