Never, Never, Never Give Up!
And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.—Galatians 6:9 (King James Version)
As much as we look forward to the holidays, it can also be one of the toughest times of the year. For me, I often look back at the year and ask, Did I accomplish my goals for this year? Did the things I was believing God for happen this year? If they didn't, it's tempting to let disappointment and despair come in. But, the good news is: God has an answer! Don't give up! Don't lose hope! Don't lose your confidence! The thing you're believing God for could be closer than you think.
God has an appointed time, and He says in Galatians 6:9 (AMP): "And let us not lose heart and grow weary and faint in acting nobly and doing right, for in due time and at the appointed season we shall reap, if we do not loosen and relax our courage..."
The NIV Bible says it like this: "Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we WILL reap a harvest if we do not give up."
My friends, that is a promise you can take to the bank. God has an appointed time to bless you. You may think it's long overdue, but God says, "If you don't give up and throw in the towel...I promise...I am going to bless you."
God is Not a Slacker
In 2 Peter 3:9 the Lord says, "I am not slack in the promises I have made toward you, as some men count slackness," but He is "longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."
I love the definition of slack: moving slowly; sluggish; lacking in activity, not busy, loose, not tense or taut, lacking in diligence or due care or concern; negligent as in a slack worker or a slacker.
Friends, God is not a slacker. Especially when it comes to those things that He has promised you. You may be one more hour, one more prayer, one more step of obedience away from your promise. God is faithful! Resist the temptation to doubt, resist the temptation to think the Lord has forgotten you—because deep down inside, you know you are closer than it may look or feel.
Then (Jesus) spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart.—Luke 18:1
I want to remind you about a woman in the Bible who knew how to pray and refused to give up until she got her promise. Her name is Hannah, and she was married to a man named Elkanah and He had another wife named Peninnah. Peninnah had children, but Hannah had none.
In 1 Samuel, Chapter One, it says Hannah was a woman of sorrowful spirit. In fact, it goes on to say she was at the point of grief and bitterness of soul. The other wife had tormented her constantly because of her barrenness, and she just couldn't take it anymore. Maybe you can relate. Maybe you feel you are just hanging on by a thread. Well, hang on brother or sister! This story and your story have a happy ending.
The Bible was clear, Hannah was deeply grieved. 1 Samuel 1:7 says, "She wept and did not eat." Fortunately, Hannah knew what to do. The Bible says she went to church and she prayed to the Lord and wept in anguish. Then she made a vow and said, "O LORD of hosts, if You will indeed look on the affliction of Your maidservant and remember me, and not forget Your maidservant but will give Your maidservant a male child, then I will give him to the LORD all the days of his life, and no razor shall come upon his head."
Now, because of her grief, Hannah prayed in her heart, only her lips moved but her voice was not heard. Therefore Eli the priest thought she was drunk and said to her, "'How long will you be drunk? Put your wine away from you!' But Hannah answered and said, 'No, my lord, I am a woman of sorrowful spirit. I have drunk neither wine nor intoxicating drink, but have poured out my soul before the Lord. Do not consider your maidservant a wicked woman, for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief I have spoken until now.' Then Eli answered and said, 'Go in peace, and the God of Israel grant your petition which you have asked of Him.' And she said, 'Let your maidservant find favor in your sight.' So the woman went her way and ate, and her face was no longer sad."
The Waiting is Not in Vain
Did Hannah have her baby yet? No! But the Bible says she was no longer sad. She hadn't conceived the baby in the natural yet, but she had conceived the baby in the spirit. She had the word of the Lord, and she knew that baby was on the way.
Here's the lesson: whatever the burden, whatever that thing is that you've been asking the Lord for year after year after year, be like Hannah. Call on the God of the Universe! Call on the One who can take your barrenness away and give you new life! The One who can give you the desires of your heart. Maybe, like Hannah, you're crying out for a baby; or a husband, a wife, a job, a ministry, a loved one to get saved, or for a healing. God remembered Hannah and at the appointed time, He will remember you too!
Hannah wanted a son, but God wanted a prophet to Israel. Her waiting was not in vain. God had to get her to the point of desperation where she was not only crying out to the Lord for a child, but she was willing to give him up for the Lord's service. She wanted a son, but God needed a prophet. God had to get her to the point where she wanted what God wanted. See, God has a purpose in your waiting.
And here we are, three thousand years later, and we're still talking about Hannah's son Samuel. Hannah's determination, her willingness to never give up, to press in and get her promise, is what makes her still a hero today. God remembered Hannah, my friend. Today, I believe God is remembering you, too. He has a set time, an appointed time.
In Psalm 102:13 God says, "You will arise and have compassion on Zion (put your name here): for the time to favor her, yes, the set time, has come."
Wendy Griffith, Senior Reporter