March 5, 2002 • By Ed Wrather
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord. - 1 Corinthians 15:58 NKJV.
God tells us through the apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:58 to be "steadfast." Some other words related to steadfastness are faithfulness, longsuffering, patience, determination, and endurance. The dictionary defines steadfast as "firmly fixed in place; not subject to change; firm in belief, determination, or adherence; loyal." Louis Skinner’s recent experience gives us a picture of this quality. Louis is 79-years-old and had climbed every mountain in Scotland except one. While training for this attempt, he broke his leg. Louis says, "I’m normally very cautious coming down. I took a wee risk that I shouldn’t have taken. I landed with a thump on my backside. My leg hit a rock and I heard an ominous crack in my right leg. I could lie there and rot or get on with it…."
Louis Skinner got on with it. He slid for three miles down the hillside until he reached a walking path. Finding a stick, on which to lean, he then walked three more miles to his car. But before getting to his car, he had to climb a ten-foot deer fence, and then he drove himself back to his hotel. The next morning, someone noticed him limping, and insisted that he go to a doctor. Louis says, "It won’t put me off climbing. I have been doing it for 50 years and it is the worst accident I have had. I love it and I am determined to climb my last Munro (a mountain)."
In life, there are constant challenges, big mountains and little mountains to climb. The apostle Paul encourages us to continue on for the Lord. Not only should we be steadfast, but also, Paul says we should "abound." Why? Because our "labor is not in vain in the Lord." The next time life knocks you down, remember Louis Skinner, who just continued on and said, "I could lie there and rot or get on with it…." We too can just lie there and rot after we are discouraged, but God would have us to get up, and move on with Him. In the midst of discouragement and pain, be steadfast, and continue on in the Name of the Lord; because the alternative is to lie there and rot!