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Special Recognition For The Career Christian Soldier
First Hour Christians
I don't know how many will identify with this blog, but I want to give some words of encouragement to those christians who are fighting a long, hard battle and still remain victorious.
I appreciate every christian testimony I've ever heard. Most have been in church buildings during a service where a certain time was allotted for that specific purpose. Heartfelt gratitude for salvation is such a wonderful thing to be shared. It is so good to know that even the vilest sinner, at any time, can turn his life around. Most of the testimonies I've heard have been from those who sewed their wild oats for a season, but then turned their lives around as Christ became their focus. I thank God that no matter what time in our lives we accept Christ, from the first hours of the day or in the eleventh hour, we will receive that just reward of Heaven.
It is common for churches to give special recognition to those who turned from a life of wickedness later in life. Often a speaker will be brought in for the purpose of sharing his life of sin with the congregation. The past life of drug addiction, alcohol, sexual immorality and such will be revealed, sometimes in great detail. All are touched and thankful to hear of his repentance and new-found life in Jesus. From this point on, he will join the warriors in lock-step, battling on with them until the final hour.
Now it is for those who are the career christian soldiers that I here give special recognition. And I must admit, I have not known many.
There are those who from the first hour, understood the calling and responded. These are the unsung heroes who have fought the good fight from childhood on until they breathed their last breath. And to think that living a christian life is not battling, is to not understand what it means to be "saved" according to God's Word.
When God told Cain in Genesis 4:7, "sin lieth at the door," the christian warrior understands that the same admonition of "if thou doest not well" applies throughout the entire lifetime.
My heartfelt honor and respect goes to those who were tantilized with alcohol, yet refused to imbibe; for the dirty jokes that were halted; the self-control practiced in all manners of sin against the body such as sexual immorality; for those who battled hard to resist the worldly gain and acknowledgement that would cause pride and haughtiness; for those who understood that each new day brought with it new temptations, yet resisted and remained true to the cause of Christ.
For those who also went out and spread the gospel because it was not their desire that any should perish, I see the beautiful feet! I am humbled by the love, strength and discipline it takes to go and witness, when the body is tired and the meal will literally be put on the back burner.
Decade after decade, I have watched as a few kept their hands to the plow and did not look back. These dedicated career christians have inspired me to keep my eye on the finish line and to them I give special consideration in this writing.
To those christian warriors still in the heat of battle, whether in the first hour or the last, here's a challenge to keep fighting. Then one day you can say, "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith." (2 Timothy 4:7)