We live in a bail-out generation. “I give up!” “I quit!” People are bailing out of relationships, bailing out of responsibilities, and running from their problems instead of dealing with them. Well, why don’t you resolve this year that you’re not going to do that?
In 2 Corinthians 4:16 Paul begins a section on values by saying, “Therefore, we do not lose heart….” Earlier in verses 8-9 he said, “We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed.”
Wow! That’s pretty tough! But Paul says in verse 16 that there’s no reason to “lose heart.”
This is a Greek word that means “to fail in heart; to faint; to give up.” The idea is, coming to the end of your patience and endurance and deciding you can’t go on anymore.
Now in the next three verses Paul goes on to give us three reasons why Christians can hang in there and not give up:
- First (verse 16), he says we need to value the inner man – not just the outer man.
- Second (verse 17), he says we need to have an eternal perspective – not just a temporal one;
- Third (verse 18), he says we need to see the invisible reality of God’s presence – not just the visible world of our sensory experience.
So, remember: There are three good reasons why you don’t have to “lose heart.”
Hey – Don’t give up! Hang in there by keeping your eyes on Christ! ■