Perseverance Pays Off - Encouragement Café - August 14, 2017

Perseverance Pays Off
By Ramona Davis

Monday, August 14, 2017

Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4 NIV

I took my usual seat at the kitchen window to watch my feathered friends enjoy the seeds in their feeder but when I raised the blinds, instead of feathers, I saw fur!

There hanging upside down by his hind feet was a squirrel helping himself to the seeds. I don’t have anything against squirrels, I just think they should all go to my brother’s house, he loves to feed squirrels.

The little thief was robbing my bird feeder and he wasn’t alone. All of his family and friends were on the ground looking up at him with smiles on their faces. He is obviously their hero.

He was cramming his cheeks full while he shook the seeds out to the crowd gathered below.

I needed to take care of this problem quickly. I decided to attach a metal baffle to the wire connected to the bird feeder. The squirrel shouldn’t be able to pass this roadblock.

My birds returned to their rightful meals, chirping and flitting about. I smiled. My husband took one look at the device and said,

I’ll give him one day to figure that one out, and he’ll be back.

I retorted,

Oh no! There is no way he can get to that feeder now.

The very next day, there he was hanging upside down by his hind feet helping himself to the seeds again. His furry little audience was applauding. I trimmed the branches hanging near the feeder… he came back.

He sat on a nearby limb and watched me as I worked with my next idea. I looked him square in the face and said,

OK Buster, I declare war.

He wasn’t intimidated; he even had a smirk on his little face. I took the feeder down and strung a tiny strong wire from one tree to the other with the feeder right in the middle. I asked him if he had ever been a tightrope walker. He said nothing.

The persistent squirrel was still in the tree and not on my feeder. Feeling very smug, I declared out loud,

I win!

My husband said confidently,

don’t count on it!

The next day, there he was hanging upside down by his hind feet helping himself to the seeds. Can you believe that rascal was a tightrope walker?!

I saw him with my own eyes, tip-toeing carefully and slowly. When he got to the feeder, he must have called his family and friends because there they were, all gathered and cheering with little flags and banners! I let him eat – he deserved it.

I was amazed at the persistence of that squirrel and I was challenged by him. I want to be just as persistent in my relationship with Christ, persistent to overcome obstacles and temptations and not give in to discouragement.

I want to stand strong in my faith during times of trials. I want to stand firm on His promises and in His love. I have come to admire my little furry friend and his unquenchable persistence. He reminds me to look up and never give up!

Don’t give in to discouragement. Pray and ask God to encourage your heart. Read Deuteronomy 31:7-8.

Father God, I thank You that You will never leave us or forsake us. I thank You for Jesus who is the Encourager of our hearts. Thank You that You place Your Holy Hand under our chins and lovingly, set our eyes on Your Beautiful Son. We Praise You. In the Sweet Name of Jesus, Amen.

© 2017 by Ramona Davis. All rights reserved.

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Originally published Monday, 14 August 2017.