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Soldiers of the Cross
 
By: Reda Icenhour
This month the Lord has given me a message
from the Word of God about the people that work
for Him. There are three points I basically
want to make...
 
(1) Soldiers must have courage in the battle
The word courage means (Heb) "Steadfastly
 minded," "Prevail," and "Strong."
In order to fight the good fight of faith, we must
 have a made up, steadfast mind.....the Bible
 tells us if we are double minded we are
unstable in all our ways. No one wants to
 go to battle with someone who is unstable,
 they will let you down when the going
 gets tough.
 
In Joshua 1: 1-7 we read that Moses has died
 and Joshua is about to take over as leader of the
 children of Israel. God tells him that He has
 given him "every place that the sole of your
 foot shall tread upon." But though God
 has "given" it to him, he still has battles
 to fight....the biggest one being the children
of Israel! God tells him to be "strong and
 of good courage." There's no place
 in a war for those who are unstable and
double minded....we must be courageous.....
fight and prevail against the wiles of the devil
. Joshua was a good soldier, he did fight and
 he did prevail....He said "As for me and my house,
we will serve the Lord".....and he meant what he
 said!! Joshua had courage to fight for
what was right...he made up his mind to stand!!
 
(2) Soldiers must keep integrity in testing
One thing for sure, Christians will be tested!
It's not a matter of "will we be tested," but a
matter of when....how we will react to it
 when it comes. If we can't keep the faith
in times of testing, how can God trust us
 not to run in the heat of the battle? How
can we be trusted not to betray our fellow
 soldiers if we lose our integrity in a test?
Job was tested more than almost anyone
 else in the Bible ( sometimes what we call
"tests" are not tests at all....but chastisement
 for sin!) But Job was truly tested for he
was "a perfect and upright man" according to
 God!! I think I'll take God's word for it...not
some of the doctrines of men that I have heard...
Job kept his integrity even in the worst of tests.
After Job had lost all his wealth and then all
 his children.....he kept his integrity...and the
 Bible says in Job 1:20 to 22 "Then Job
arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved
 his head, and fell upon the ground and
 worshiped, And said, Naked came I out
 of my mother's womb, and naked shall I
return thither: the Lord gave, and the Lord
hath taken away; blessed be the name
of the Lord. In all this Job sinned not, nor
 charged God foolishly." Sometimes
when we think the test is over, we find
 that there is part two!! Job must have
 thought that he had nothing else left to
 lose.....no other way he could be tested,
 but there was! As a person that suffers
 from migraine headache's I know how we
 can be weakened by pain in our bodies.
 When we are feeling good, it seems we
 can deal with almost anything....but when
 laid low by sickness, even the smallest
things seem unsurmountable. After having lost
 all, including his children, Job found Satan
 attacking his body....with God's permission!
 
But even in the midst of great pain....pain of
 heart from his losses, pain in his body from
afflictions....Job kept his integrity!! After
 Satan afflicts him with boils from his crown
 to his feet....after his wife tells him to "curse
 God and die,"...still Job remains faithful to
the Lord. In chapter 2 and verse 10 we read...
"But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one
 of the foolish women speaketh. What? Shall
 we receive good at the hand of God, and shall
 we not receive evil? In all this did not Job
 sin with his lips." In chapter 13 verse 15,
Job says, "Though He slay me, yet will I
 trust Him: but I will maintain mine own
ways before Him."
 
Job kept his integrity in his tests....
it seems that some people can stand the
 heat of the battle, then lose it all when a
test comes along that they don't understand...
Job did not know why or what was going on....
he simply trusted God through it all!!
 
(3) Endure Hardships
Some people can keep their courage in a
battle....even keep their integrity in testing...
 Then lose it all when they have even a
small hardship to endure! I guess the most
common hardship for the workers of the Lord....
the Soldiers of the Cross...is financial...it seems
 at times we have so many visions, and we are
 convinced they are all of God!! We go out and
 begin a good work...then the money runs out!
Then the hardships seem to begin...and get
 worse everyday! The hard part is waiting on
the Lord...if He gave us something to do...He
will certainly make a way....in due season.
 Often we lose ground by whining, murmuring
 and complaining...if we would praise the Lord,
 endure, and hang on, the answer would
come sooner!
 
Paul writes Timothy to "Endure hardness
(hardships),
 as a good soldier of Jesus Christ." 2nd Timothy 2:3
 A part of being a good witness for Jesus, a good
soldier, is being able to endure with a smile....
to keep on working while you also endure!
The hardship will pass faster if you work
 while you wait....not whine while you wait!!
The Bible tell us if we wait upon the Lord,
 we will renew our strength...so many get
weary in hardships, if we keep our eyes on
 the Lord, do whatever we can, and wait,
we will then be good soldiers! Jeremiah 12:5
 "If thou hast run with the footmen, and they
have wearied thee, then how canst thou
 contend with horses? And if in the land of
 peace, wherein thou trustedst, they wearied
 thee, then how wilt thou do in the swelling of
Jordan." In other words, if you can't be a good
soldier now, how can you be one when the
days wax worse and worse?? It's time to stop
and take a look at where we are....where we
need improvement...and work on it...
get strong in the Lord! And be a good soldier!
 
 
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requests to: reda777@vnet.net
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