Encouragement for your daily walk with God
When you read about Paul in Scripture, one thing is clear: he viewed whatever happened to him through the eyes of faith. Let me say it differently: Paul endured hardships by focusing on the eternal, things unseen. In that sense, he was like Moses who, “left Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured, as seeing Him who is unseen” [Hebrews 11.27]. When your heart is right, when faith burns in your heart, you can do that.
These words were etched on the mantle of a massive fireplace: If your heart is cold, my fire cannot warm it. No earthly fire can warm a cold heart because it refuses to see anything beyond the present. A cold heart is transfixed on the hardship. Not so with Paul. His heart remained warm, fueled by an inner flame of faith. In fact, the more intense the hardship, the hotter his heart for God!
That’s how the fire of faith works. It consumes the chaff of fear and unbelief and melts away doubts. That’s how Paul remained steadfast; his heart was ablaze with faith in the unseen. Faith in the unseen is the biblical definition of faith — "Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” [Hebrews 11.1].
Let’s hold on to faith. Then when trials come, like Paul and Moses, we can focus on the unseen things. When our hearts are right with God, we can do that.
No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us. Philippians 3.13-14