Rise to the challenge (Part 1)

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Think a minute...One man said, “I have problems flown in fresh daily wherever I am!” Ever feel like you cannot get away from problems no matter where you go? We all know that problems and challenges are a part of life.

Some of them we face every day at home and at work. Then there is that once-in-a-lifetime challenge we must overcome. How we respond to challenges greatly determines how successful and satisfying our life will be. Remember: “A smooth sea never made a skillful sailor.”

The world of sports can help us see the kind of character we need to rise to the challenge. The Australian Herb Elliot was a great runner—until he broke his foot and could not run for months. He was then forced just to watch as John Landy ran the mile in under 4 minutes. 

Afterwards, Elliot told a famous running coach that he also wanted to run the mile in less than four minutes. The coach looked at him and answered: “Son, do you know what it takes to run a mile in under 4 minutes?

Are you ready to run until you can hardly stand and you’re almost unconscious?” Young Herb Elliot rose to the challenge. Less than one year later, at age 19, he broke the world record by running a mile in only 3 minutes and 54 seconds!  

The great female athlete Babe Didrikson won two gold medals in the Olympics and was also a champion in tennis, golf, horseback riding, swimming, basketball…and then cancer. At the end of her fight with this deadly disease, she called her husband to her bedside, took him by the hand and said: “Honey, I hope you’ll find someone to love you as much as I have loved you.”

As her husband began to weep she said: “It’s OK, dear. While I’ve been in the hospital I have learned that a moment of true happiness is a lifetime, and I have had a lot of happiness.” 

That is character and courage rising to the challenge! To give your life to loving and serving others and your Creator is what life is all about. Jesus will enable you to take whatever problems and pain are thrown at you and use them to grow and live a life full of love, truth, peace and purpose.

From this day forward, won’t you choose to live your Maker’s right way? Jesus will always be with you to guide and strengthen you to rise to every single challenge you face—big or small. Just think a minute… 

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