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Endurance Required

Details are important.  Coming close, or almost meeting the specifications, or living with “I just failed to do one thing” can mean the difference between victory and defeat in sports, life and death in airplane flights, and “healing” or becoming incapacitated in health issues.  No one wants to hear their doctor say to the family of a patient that died, “I almost did the right procedure”.  No one wants to make an approach with a pilot on a stormy day if you know he consistently failed the flight tests in landing in high winds.

The old adage “a miss is as good as a mile” is so very true.  There are those rare occasions when we are not harmed by poor performance that we did or that others did to us. However, most often failure to follow procedures properly will end in sorrow and disaster.

The United States Women’s Softball team won the gold medal in Atlanta’s 1996 Olympic Games. They lost only one game but from that loss came a remarkable story about perseverance. In the fifth inning against Australia, Danielle Tyler hit a home run over the center-field fence. The American third baseman floated around the bases with a rush of adrenaline. When she was greeted by a swarm of well-wishing teammates at home plate she let the excitement distract her focus and she did not touch the base. When all of the yelling subsided, the Australian team quietly appealed to the umpire who dramatically called Tyler out.

Rather than scoring a run, Tyler’s blast over the fence netted her team an out. As it ended up, had the lady slugger stepped on home plate, her team would have won 1-0. Instead, after seven innings of regulation play the game was tied at 0-0. In extra innings, Australia emerged with a 2-1 win and the U.S. team took their only loss of the Olympics.   (Copied).

Scriptures remind us of the focus that every believer is to employ…….

Hebrews 6:11-15 We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, so that what you hope for may be fully realized.  12 We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised.  13 When God made his promise to Abraham, since there was no one greater for him to swear by, he swore by himself, 14 saying, “I will surely bless you and give you many descendants.”  15 And so after waiting patiently, Abraham received what was promised. 

1 Timothy 6:11-12 But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

The best news is that the key to our spiritual victory always is Jesus.  For we are….confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.   (Phil.1:6).