Echoes From the Campfire

But there’s more to being a good man on the trail than having a tough body. Whether you like it or not, you have to have a tough mind, and a tough hide.”
–Clair Huffaker (Cowboy)

“In everything we do, we show that we are true ministers of God. We patiently endure troubles and hardships and calamities of every kind.”
–2 Corinthians 6:4 (NLT)
Can you believe it? February is over, two months of 2018 is already history. What have you done in the past fifty-nine days? Have you become bitter because of people or circumstances or have you risen on the steps of adversity to be better? Have struggles already begun to burden you and wear you down, or have you learned to toughen yourself with the help of the Holy Spirit to stand in the midst of adversity?
Years ago I gave a birthday card to a friend. It was a picture of a bull with “Old Hide” branded on its side. He kept that card posted on the outside of the door to his office and workroom. He has gone on to be with the Lord, but was one to ride the river with. He learned that to make it through life you had to be tough. Paul uses terms such as, “wrestle,” “fight,” “endure,” “not despair” and others to show that life isn’t a tip-toe through the tulips affair.
Being tough is not always physical or mental, but it can also be spiritual. There are tools for us to use, yet, truthfully, many Christians do not lean on and use them. I recently read the following:

“Families are breaking up; people who walked faithfully with Christ for years are living in fear and defeat. Each of these people have been overcome by something–sin, depression, worldliness, covetousness–and year after year, their problems seem to get worse. Yet, what shocks me most about their letters is that very few of these Christians ever mention prayer. They turn to tapes, books, counselors, call-in radio programs, therapies of all kinds, but rarely to prayer.
Why is it so hard for Christians to seek God for their desperate needs when they are in times of crisis? After all, the Bible stands as one long testimony that God hears the cries of His children and answers them with tender love.”
–David Wilkerson

If this is you, take time to read the following promises from God’s Word. Psalm 35:15,17; 1 John 5:14-15; Matthew 21:22.
Ponder This: Proverbs 18:1-2, “An unfriendly man pursues selfish ends; he defies all sound judgment A fool finds no pleasure in understanding but delights in airing his own opinions.”
To contrast this, a godly man pursues unselfish ends. He delights in the Lord. The fool listens to his own opinions. He wants to be autonomous pursuing selfish purposes and seeks to be self-directed.
The godly person wants to be separate unto holiness, the fool unto selfishness. Consider the source when you hear a fool’s opinion!