Victory in Jesus
1 John 5:4
For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.
Sometimes it takes more faith to believe that God is in control of your own personal life than it takes to believe that He is in control of the whole world.
When my children were young, my wife, Marsha, read to them before bedtime. One book that I vividly recall her reading was the biography of Adoniram Judson, pioneer missionary to Burma.
On one occasion Judson was falsely accused of being an English spy. As a result, he endured a cruel imprisonment by the Burmese government. His wife, Anne, faithfully and courageously attempted to have him released through every possible channel, but to no avail.
His prison cell was so tiny that he was forced to stand, while the cells of others allowed room to lie down to sleep. The sun was unbearably hot at times; prisoners were never allowed to bathe; pain filled every fiber of his body as he was tortured day after day. His only respite from the agony of his incarceration was a visit from Anne. In those brief but wonderful moments, she would encourage him with the same message, "Hang on, Adoniram, God will give us the victory."
Week after tortuous week, Anne came and encouraged him, delivering the same words, "God will give us the victory." After many months, Adoniram was unexpectedly released and assigned the task of interpreter for affairs between the English and Burmese. Because of this new duty, he was still separated from Anne. Sadly, during his time of absence, Anne became deathly ill.
Months passed and Judson was finally allowed to return home a free man. Body broken and weak, he approached the place he once called home. As he slowly limped toward the door, he saw a child sitting in the dirt. The little girl was so covered with filth that he failed, at first, to recognize her as his own daughter. He went into their simple hut, squinting in the darkness, and gasped as he saw the emaciated form of his wife lying on a cot, weakened by disease. Tears coursing down his cheeks, he hugged his daughter close to him and knelt beside the cot. Anne looked up at him and with her last breath, smiled and whispered the words, "Adoniram, God will give us the victory."
If you were to be able somehow to interview the Judsons today, they would no longer be saying, "God will give us the victory"; instead, they would joyfully deliver the news, "God has given us the victory!"
Be encouraged, my friend. No matter what you're going through right now, your life is in God's hands. Hold fast to your faith as Anne and Adoniram did, even in the face of squalor and disease, deprivation and disappointment, heartache and loss.
Your reward in the end is everlasting, and the celebration of final victory is . . . just ahead!
Prayer Point: Pray right now that God will give you the kind of faith that Adoniram and Anne Judson exercised, even in the face of persecution. Then, thank God for giving you victory over sin, death, and the world, through Christ's perfect life, His sacrificial death, and His resurrection.
Extra Refreshment: Read John 16.