May 4, 2001 • By Ed Wrather
Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; distributing to the needs of the saints given to hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. - Romans 12:9-14.
Phillis Roberts had a frightening experience last week. She was having a nice day at the beach at Palm Beach, Florida when the tide suddenly carried her out to sea. Phillis, who is forty-one years old, somehow managed to grab hold of a lobster trap buoy. The Coast Guard found her twenty hours later still desperately clinging to that buoy. She received treatment for hypothermia and otherwise was in good condition.
Can you imagine clinging to a buoy all of those hours not knowing whether anyone would ever come to rescue you or not? How tired and cold Phillis must have been, but still she had a grip on the buoy that was saving her life. She was in a desperate struggle with the elements to survive. She was becoming colder and colder, and the waves kept coming and pounding at her the entire time.
As Christians we are in a struggle to survive as well. The world is constantly bombarding us with its evil message. The flesh wars against us and the devil sends his fiery darts. The apostle Paul was well aware of this struggle because he had been in the very midst of the battle and knew exactly what it was like. Paul tells us that we must “cling to what is good.”
Our struggle may not appear to be as desperate as that of Phillis Roberts, but it is. We are in the spiritual struggle to have life. The more we “cling to what is good” the more life we will have.
Grab hold! Get a grip! And don’t let go!