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Sunday, March 13, 2011

Staying Power

This post is about Chapter 4 "Staying Power" from "Tender Warrior" by Stu Weber.

In this chapter Stu introduces us to a man who’s life illustrated intense “Staying Power.” This man’s name was “Job” and his story is told in the Old Testament’s “Book of Job.”

Stu provides a summary of Job and his life:
“Job’s presence filled a room, he was confident, but humble. Authoritative but gracious. Exuding strength but inviting companionship. His character calls you to follow him. His success speaks well of him. His family reflects the quality of his leadership. A guy you would want to get to know, learn from, emulate. Despite enormous demands in his life there was always time for the kids. He seemed to have a vision much larger than himself.”
As the story progresses, he loses it all and the question becomes will Job remain a man or cash in his character. Will his character survive? People, events, evil schemes, disasters, catastrophes can take things away from you - things on the outside, but no one can take away what’s on the inside - heart, soul and character. A man can throw it away, but no one can ever take it away.

The patience of Job is his staying power. James talks of this in the “book of James”, its the endurance, staying under, persevering, holding fast, and stay firm.

Job's masculinity rested not in:

* What he owned
* The size of his house
* The amount of his investments
* What he could perform
* What he could achieve
* The people he knew
* What model of donkey he rode
* His status in the community

Job sources his masculinity and person-hood in who he was, alone and naked before God. That’s what makes a man out of you. There was a sense of permanence; strong, stable, secure and consistent throughout. A man’s greatest strength is hi capacity to make and keep his commitments. A man’s word connects. A man’s word stays. But unfortunately in today’s society, men are not staying.

The ability to make/keep promises is central to manhood. The calling of every man is to offer stability to a world full of chaos. A real man brings certainty to his world by the power of a promise. It is good for a man to spend less time climbing and moving and more time to staying put. Invest in the two institutions God gave his primary attention to: Family and the local church.

The kind of man who pleased God is a man of his word. One who makes and keeps promises. One who stays. That kind of man creates an atmosphere of stability in an ocean of insecurity.

You have to stay, have to serve, remain under - so that endurance can have it’s good work in you. The only reason Jesus became a man was to be “man handled”. Job’s enormous staying power was rooted in his walk with God. “Lord, help me to remember that nothing is going to happen to me today, that You and I can’t handle together.

Bottom line:
Stay with it, stick with your commitments, stand by your promises. The heart of staying power is sacrifice - giving ones self up for the good of another. Real men don’t run, they stay and stay, like Job, Like Jesus.

Based on this, here’s some questions to leave you with:

Stu makes reference to the passage from James about the quality of endurance (staying under, remaining, persevering, holding fast, and standing firm.) Why do you think this notion of “staying power” is so little evidenced in our contemporary culture?

If the disasters that hit Job were to happen to you, how do you think you’d respond?

Feel free to post comments or email with questions and your thoughts.