Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Stubborness: A Virtue

Chuckle: The kindergarten class had settled down to its coloring books. Jonathon raised his hand and said, “Miss Franklin, I ain’t got no crayons.” “Jonathon,” Miss Franklin said, “you mean, ‘I don’t have any crayons. You don’t have any crayons. We don’t have any crayons. They don’t have any crayons.’” “Well,” said Jonathon, What happened to all the crayons?”
Quote: “You are stubborn and I am going to spank you, but don’t take the spanking too seriously; stubborness may be one of man’s most valuable assets.” –Charles Naret-Nathan

“Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:58 NIV).
I’ll never forget the reaction of Dotse’s Father when I asked his permission to marry his daughter. After I stumbled and mumbled through the question, he looked steadily at me, for what seemed like eternity, then all he said was, “she sure is stubborn!” His answer carried an unmistakable message for me, “I really don’t want you to take away my daughter whom I love with all my heart.” He was a man of few words, but finally, and reluctantly he gave his permission. We grew to enjoy a great relationship and I loved him deeply.
Stubborness may sound like an odd subject for a devotional. When I began thinking about it, I went to the dictionary for a definition of stubborn. It means to be; inflexible in opinion or intention; set on having one’s way; and not willing to give in. But it is also characterized by perseverance, persistence; tenacity and unyieldingness.
You may see it as a stretch to call stubborness a virtue. However, if we Christians stubbornly, tenaciously, unyieldingly, and uncompromisingly stand firm in our faithfulness and service to our Lord, I definitely see it as a virtue. “There is a difference between a fleshly stubbornness and a godly perseverance. The former insists on getting one's will done in heaven, and the latter determines to get God's will done on earth.” --William Thrasher
Being stubborn for the sake of being stubborn is certainly not an attractive trait, especially if it results in selfish pigheadedness. But it becomes precious as a formula for practical living when it is based on a genuine relationship with our Lord and a firm commitment to sharing the gospel and ministering to the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of people in the name of Jesus. If we stubbornly stand firm and let nothing detract us or move us off course, our labor will not be in vain. The world may “spank” you in many ways, but if you stubbornly remain faithful in the power of the Holy Spirit, final victory is assured.
Love, Jerry & Dotse


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