Weekly Devotion 11-10-21

Weekly Devotion with Kim Wu

A neighbor dropped the boy off at the curb outside the local hospital, pointing him to the door he should use to walk into the building, where he would have surgery to have his tonsils removed.

The boy was my father.  I’m not sure how old he was at the time, but I know he was not old enough to feel good about walking through those doors alone.  Dad told me this story one day, adding that he would have turned around and tried to run back home, except that the neighbor was still idling at the curb, watching him go inside.

I found the “Distinguished Sore Throat Medal for Outstanding Bravery During Operation Tonsil” among my dad’s things after my parents both passed away.  Dad didn’t have much from his life growing up, so I think it is significant that he saved this.

My father had to grow up pretty quickly.  His father passed away when he was still very young, leaving his mom to care for him and his four sisters with no reliable income.  She took in laundry, and the girls went and cleaned houses for some of the neighbors after school and on the weekends.  My dad lived with a local farmer for most of the week, doing chores on the farm before and after school.  On Saturday evenings, after his chores were done, he was allowed to go home for the night, but he had to be back by Sunday afternoon because “a farmer’s work is never done.”

Life is full of difficulties.  Some experience more challenges than others, but we all have moments when we need something to give us courage.  A medal given by a caring doctor can remind us years later that we can do hard things.

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.  Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.  Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”

These three verses in the twelfth chapter of Hebrews are what I consider my life verses.  They remind me of all those who have gone before me, who are cheering me on, and whose life stories have been given to me as a way of encouraging me to keep going.

Abraham’s story tells me to keep believing in God’s good plans, even as the days, months, and years go by and I am still waiting.

Joseph’s story tells me to hang on to God, and fight for the blessings God has for me.  That I am one who is both broken and blessed.

And Jesus.  Jesus, who endured the cross for me.  I can cast all my worries on Him, and I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.

Don’t grow weary.  Don’t lose heart.  You’ve got Jesus.

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