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A Boost of Courage

[Written by Joe Stowell for Our Daily Bread.]

June 13, 2017

Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. —Hebrews 12:2

When my son Joe was a child, I took him to the local YMCA for swimming lessons. I could almost see an Olympic gold medal swinging around his neck.

To my chagrin, Joe didn’t “wow” the class. Instead, he took one look at the water, one look at the instructor, and started bawling.

I thought, Oh, no, I’ve fathered a coward! To make matters worse, the instructor motioned for me to take Joe back to the locker room. In the midst of his sobs and pleas to go home, I gave him a little pep talk: “You can do it, Joe! I’ll come to all your lessons, and we’ll have a signal. When you get scared you can look up at me, and when I hold my thumb up you’ll know it’s going to be okay because I’m here cheering you on.” Joe finally agreed, and today he can swim circles around me.

How often we too face situations that seem overwhelming and impossible. It’s in those times that we need to find our confidence in Jesus. Our first instinct may be to back away in fear. But that’s exactly when we need to look to Jesus, “the author and finisher of our faith” (Heb. 12:2), who will raise His nail-scarred hand and say, “Stay with it. Run the race. I’ve run it before you, and in My power you can win. You can do it!”

Hold fast to Christ and He will give
The will to see you through;
And if you keep on keeping on,
Your strength He will renew. —D. De Haan

Christ’s victory in the past gives courage for the present and hope for the future.