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Monday, September 10, 2018

Learning To Choose Short-Term Pain for Long-term Gain

In review of Hebrews 11:25 it says, “[Moses] chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin” (NIV).

Today’s verse comes from Hebrews 11:24-28, where I see great examples of faith, in particular that of Moses. It was by faith that Moses, when he grew up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. He chose to share the oppression of God’s people instead of enjoying the fleeting pleasures of sin. He thought it was better to suffer for the sake of Christ than to own the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking ahead to his great reward. It was by faith that Moses left the land of Egypt, not fearing the king’s anger. He kept right on going because he kept his eyes on the one who is invisible. It was by faith that Moses commanded the people of Israel to keep the Passover and to sprinkle blood on the doorposts so that the angel of death would not kill their firstborn sons.

It was by faith that Moses give up his place in the palace, he did it because he saw the fleeting nature of great wealth and prestige. It is easy to be deceived by the temporary benefits of wealth, popularity, status, and achievement, and to be blind to the long-range benefits of God's Kingdom. It is my faith that can help me look beyond the world's value system to see the eternal values of God's Kingdom. There is a critical message here for me. Don't forfeit eternal rewards for temporary benefits. Like Moses, I should be willing to make sacrifices now for greater rewards later.

Last Friday I learned that, in order to be all that God wants me to be, I have to make this first resolution: “I resolve that I will no longer let other people press me into their mold. I’m going to be what God wants me to be. I’m going to do what God wants me to do, and I’m going to fulfill the plan that God has for my life, not somebody else’s plan for my life.”

The second resolution to make is to: Choose short-term pain for long-term gain.

Anybody who’s ever played sports knows this one. I’ve got to practice and work hard in order to play in a championship game. I don’t just walk out and win the championship. If I’m going to be good at anything, I’ve got to accept short-term pain for long-term gain.

That’s not just true in sports. It’s true in finances. And it’s true in relationships. I’ve got to work to make it work.

This is an important resolution, because most problems in life come from the inability to delay gratification. Everything in society teaches us to say, “I want everything and I want it now and I want it free and I want it easy.” Life doesn’t work like that!

Moses made a choice: “He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin” (Hebrews 11:25 NIV). It says he chose to be mistreatedto endure the short-term pain for the long-term gain of doing the right thing.

I’m going to have trouble, trials and pain in life. But if I choose to do the hard and right thing right now and put in the effort and the discipline to learn, to grow, to become strong and mature, then later in life I’ll get reap the benefit from it.

Today I am benefiting from the decisions I made in the past. To not spend more than I made, to save, to tithe, to honor God. I’m benefiting now because I was disciplined. I did the hard thing first.

When I choose the short-term pain like Moses did, I’m going to see God deliver me so that I can enjoy the long-term reward.

Bottom Line:
Choose to make a sacrifice now that will provide a greater reward later.

What this means to me:
I should be willing to make sacrifices now for much greater rewards later in eternity.

In summary, I need to choose to make the sacrifices now that will provide a greater reward later or be trained for something that God will need me for. I need to look ahead for the greater reward. It's easy to be deceived by the temporary benefits of wealth, popularity, status and achievement. My faith can help me look beyond. I should be willing to make sacrifices now for greater rewards later.  So choose short-term pain for the long term gain. After all, most problems come from my inability to delay gratification. I’m going to have trouble, trials and pain in life. But if I choose to do the hard and right thing right now and put in the effort and the discipline to learn, to grow, to become strong and mature, then later in life I’ll get reap the benefit from it. Today, I'm benefiting from the decisions I made in the past.

Thank you Father for this past weekend and time of refreshment and time with my family and especially my grandson. I also thank you for this perspective on the difficulties and pressure’s I’m feeling in my current role. I’m reminded that what experiencing is all part of life and your training plan for me. I pray for the encouragement to to do the hard and right thing right now and put in the effort and the discipline to learn, to grow, to become strong and mature through it. I know you have a purpose in it and that it will benefit you and your Kingdom and that I’ll reap the benefit from it as well. Give me the wisdom and guidance to manage what’s in front of me today. Help me lead my team and interact in a loving manner with others. Help me to be an encouragement this week. In your Son Jesus name I pray, Amen!

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