Column Post by Rita Schulte
“Romancing the Stone”, “Mission Impossible”, and “James Bond” are among my favorite action movies. The most noticeable thing in all of these films is that the hero is facing insurmountable odds while searching and fighting for a priceless treasure.
Our movie characters aren’t so different from us. We may not be fighting for billions in gold or priceless buried treasure, but our treasure is just as important. It may be a prayer for an unsaved spouse, freedom from a health issue, or a wayward child. Whatever it might be, it can certainly feel insurmountable and cause us to lose heart in the battle.
In 2 Corinthians 4:7 Paul talks about treasure—a different kind of treasure. He goes on to explain why losing heart is not an option. And instead of our having to search for it, Paul tells us where it’s hidden: in jars of clay (us).
What is the treasure? It’s Christ in us, the hope of glory, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge (Colossians 2:3).
What does that have to do with the problem of losing heart? Plenty, and if we look at verses 8-9 we’ll see it. In these verses Paul tells us what we can expect as we face the trials of life: he says we’ll be hard-pressed, crushed, and struck down. He really gets it.
But then in verse 16, he seemingly kills the moment by saying that we shouldn’t lose heart! He says our trials are only light and momentary afflictions. Really? This from the guy who was beaten, shipwrecked, and flogged? How could he say this? Because he knew a few secrets about “the treasure” that are key to not losing heart. Consider this:
- The treasure is worth the fight
Paul knew an abiding relationship with Christ would bear the fruit of wisdom and knowledge, equipping us for the battle. No treasure is more valuable or more worth fighting for.
- Grace is only for today
Believers will always face hardships. We are under a death system (law). But no life can spring forth without death (trials) and will always reveal resurrection power.
- We must change our perspective
Don’t deny your circumstances, but look for ways to speak life into them.
- Renew the mind daily
Our outer man is decaying, but our inner man is to be experiencing daily renewal through the washing of the Word in our hearts. Be intentional about setting your mind on the truth and seeking God with all your heart.
- Focus on eternal glory
If we focus on what is seen, it will be easy to lose heart. Set your mind instead on what is unseen and imperishable.
Digging for treasure isn’t something we should leave to action heroes. It’s something we can practice daily by following the steps outlined here. They will help us to dive deep, making losing heart seem like a mission impossible.
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P.S. We’d love to know your thoughts, so please be sure to comment below. Each of our commenters will be entered in a drawing for this month’s FREE book giveaway, Mothers & Daughters: Mending a Strained Relationship by author Teena Stewart.
Rita Schulte is a licensed professional board certified counselor. She received her B.S. in psychology and a master’s degree in counseling from Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. Rita has a private practice with offices in Fairfax and Manassas Virginia where she specializes in the treatment of eating disorders, anxiety and depressive disorders as well as grief and loss issues. In April, 2011 she launched “Heartline Podcast” where she talks with top leaders in the Christian counseling and literary world about cutting edge issues affecting the hearts and lives of people today. She also airs a 1 minute devotional spot Consider This on 90.5 FM in NC and 90.9 FM in Lynchburg, VA. Heartline airs on Saturday evenings on 90.5 FM NC and will be heard on Christian Life Internet Radio in the coming months. Her book, Sifted As Wheat: finding hope and healing through the losses of life is currently with Hartline Literary Agency. You can follow her at http://www.siftedaswheat.com or Twitter at Heartlinepod.
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