The struggle is real.. The Apostle Paul knew a little about what it was like to struggle. He didn’t need a t-shirt or a bumper sticker to prove the point. In fact here in 2 Corinthians 11 we are given some insights to his struggle:
- Five times the Jews gave him thirty-nine lashes
- Three times he was beaten with rods
- He was stoned once
- Three times shipwrecked
- Endured one night and a day adrift at sea
- In danger of robbers, his own people, the Gentiles, in the city, in the wilderness, in the sea, in rivers, and danger of false brothers
- In toil and hardship
- Enduring sleepless nights
- Many times he was hungry and thirsty
- Cold and exposed to harsh elements
- Pressured by anxiety for all the churches
To all my sisters out there.. that difficult relationship you’re in, those married couples you’re counseling, the exasperating child you’re trying to raise.. it’s all part of the struggle. When God told Joshua, “Wherever you set foot, you will be on land I have given you..” God didn’t just hand Joshua the keys to the Promised Land and tell him to move on in. Joshua had to fight! Once the Israelites crossed the Jordan River, they knew there would not only be a physical fight but also a spiritual fight to face.
When the struggle is real in our lives, let us always remember what Paul closed with in 2 Corinthians 13:11-12:
Grow to maturity
Encourage each other
Live in harmony and peace
Greet each other with Christian love.
We can do that. May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
Finding Strength in the Struggle,