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Previous Challenge Entry
Topic: Endurance (03/22/04)

TITLE: Birds of a Feather


Birds of a Feather

The stop sign couldnít have been placed at a more opportune spot. The honking geese brought my attention from the road to the sky. What appeared to be hundreds, but was probably only fifty or sixty, formation-flying geese passed over head returning from their winter retreat in the south. Blind adherence to following their leader the goal of each.

Never deterring from their charted course, each held his place in perfect unison with the leader. Rebellion or self-engrandisement never seemed to be an option. Endurance to reach their destination with complete cooperation the only goal.

God has placed large and small examples of endurance throughout His world. The salmon that swims unrelentingly upstream to the delight of the ravenous grizzly bears waiting for their breakfast. The mammoth humpback whale that travels to feed in the cold north waters of the Atlantic and then heads to the Caribbeanís warm tropical waters to give birth. The lowly ant that works non-stop to supply its nest for the coming winter and the ever-reviled cockroach that seems to endure time itself.

Many would call these examples of instinct rather than endurance and that may be true, but they can be viewed as how God would have us live our lives. Blind adherence to His Word, relentless pursuit of the unsaved whatever the cost to our own lives may be, unyielding stamina to work for Him through storm or calm, are the calls upon those who have accepted His ultimate example of endurance.

Christ, whose endurance can never be matched. The glorious thing is that God doesnít expect us to match Christ. He knows we arenít capable of that type of endurance. However He does expect the following of Christ, no matter the circumstances, to be the ultimate goal of our lives.

When our relatives ridicule us for our beliefs, when that unsaved friend or co-worker smirk behind your back, when that person you just told about Christ refuses your invitation to pray with them; Christís example of endurance should be our stalwart example.

If the fowls of the air, the fish of the seas, and the bugs of the ground have endurance that makes us marvel, shouldnít those of us who belong to Christ at least attempt endurance.

Keep on keeping on, as the old saying goes. The geese donít quit, the whales donít quit nor do the salmon or the ant. All continue on in their respective roles here on earth and so should we who profess to be owned by Christ. Endurance for Him until He returns to gather His church to Himself is all He asks of us.

May your endurance be like the reviled cockroach and last for all time.

Member Comments
Member Date
Mary C Legg03/29/04
great job--but I'd rather be an ant. really good examples.
Dori Knight03/29/04
wonderful! i love your analogies, and i'm crazy about your closing line. absolutely a top contender for this week's vote. VERY well done, indeed. thanks for sharing this!
Donna Anderson03/30/04
Delightfully inspiring! :)
Linda Germain 03/31/04
You are right about God's examples of endurance. Lovely article!
Lynne Cox04/01/04
I just loved the last line! Sounds like a "Confucius Say". Very well-written article that held my interest.
Anthony David04/02/04
Your last line is simply fantastic. Cockroaches indeed, excellent examples of perseverance & endurance!
Julie Pisacane04/02/04
This was a wonderful sweet read on a tough part of our lives. That toughness that we go through leads to the Throne of Christ. I loved how you made comparisons between the animals and our lives.
God bless you and keep writing! Julie Pisacane
Kenny Paul Clarkson04/02/04
We should be better than bugs. Good point. (Look to the ant!)
Dave Wagner04/04/04
Interesting finishing line, comparing us to cockroaches! lol

You draw a lot of material together nicely here. One prob I have is this line:

>>...relentless pursuit of the unsaved whatever the cost to our own lives may be...<<

This could be an unnecessary burden to place on the shoulders of some. Calling has a lot to do with this level of evangelism - I don't think it applies to every Christian. It can lead to complete burn-out and end up being counterproductive or even destructive in certain types of people. Not everyone is cut out for evangelism on this level, so the guilt that can result from someone reading this statement of yours can be overwhelming.

I think people should be encouraged to pursue God, with an eye toward learning to hear Him. That way, a person knows His voice, and will speak when He leads them to, and be silent when He says as well. Sometimes, the right words at the wrong time can be a big mistake. Timing is everything.

In any case, I appreciate this submission, and as usual, I look forward to more of your work.