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Grit – Philippians 3:9

Male athlete doing exercises on the press outdoor
Philippians 3:9 – “God uses my faith in Christ to make me right with Him.”

What is the hardest thing you have had to do? We might say some great physical challenge. Or it may be finishing schooling or overcoming some difficulty in life.

But Edgar Guest may have hit the nose on the head.

How much grit do you think you’ve got?

Can you quit a thing that you like a lot?

You may talk of pluck; it’s an easy word,

And where’er you go it is often heard;

But can you tell to a jot or guess

Just how much courage you now possess?

You may stand to trouble and keep your grin,

But have you tackled self-discipline?

Have you ever issued commands to you

To quit the things that you like to do,

And then, when tempted and sorely swayed,

Those rigid orders have you obeyed?

Don’t boast of your grit till you’ve tried it out,

Nor prate to men of your courage stout,

For it’s easy enough to retain a grin

In the face of a fight there’s a chance to win,

But the sort of grit that is good to own

Is the stuff you need when you’re all alone.

How much grit do you think you’ve got?

Can you turn from joys that you like a lot?

Have you ever tested yourself to know

How far with yourself your will can go?

If you want to know if you have grit,

Just pick out a joy that you like, and quit.

It’s bully sport and it’s open fight;

It will keep you busy both day and night;

For the toughest kind of a game you’ll find

Is to make your body obey your mind.

And you never will know what is meant by grit

Unless there’s something you’ve tried to quit.

Saying no to ourselves, resisting the allure of something we desire, can be one of the most challenging tasks we face. As Oscar Wilde famously proclaimed, “I can resist anything but temptation.” It’s true, sometimes the most pleasing path is not necessarily the best one to take. It’s far easier to indulge in comfort and relaxation than to push ourselves through the grueling exercise of sit-ups.

However, the Apostle Paul understood that as Christians, we bear a unique responsibility. We must learn to say no to the enticing temptations that life presents, to gain something far greater and more magnificent. Despite having achieved so much in his life, including a privileged upbringing and an extensive knowledge of the scriptures, Paul made the courageous decision to let it all go.

He shared with the Philippians, “But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith” (Philippians 3:7–9).

The true test of our character lies in how deeply we desire what God offers. What are we truly willing to sacrifice to obtain it?

Robert G. Taylor


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Robert Taylor

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Robert Taylor

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