Keeping the Faith on Saturday

The scene at Calvary was excruciating.  The mother of Jesus and a few of His followers sat and watched all that transpired.  I cannot imagine the sorrow and grief they experienced through the whole ordeal.  That had to be, without doubt, the darkest day of their lives – they watched Jesus suffer and die.

The words of a couple of the disciples on the way to Emmaus three days later summed up the feelings of hopelessness felt by all those who trusted Jesus.  “…the chief priests and our rulers delivered Him to be condemned to death, and crucified Him. But we were hoping that it was He who was going to redeem Israel…” (Luke 24:20-21 NKJV) They had such high hopes for Jesus…but they saw Him die.

Jesus was taken from the cross and placed in a borrowed tomb.  The people returned to their homes…grieving, confused, afraid.  In spite of all that Jesus had done to prepare them for this time, they did not seem to know what to expect next.  It is going to be ok – as a matter of fact it is going to be great – but you could not tell it by anyone’s actions.  All present evidence points to defeat.  It simply appears all hope is gone.

As bad as Friday was for the followers of Jesus, Saturday was a whole other story.  They have cried all they can cry.  The heart-wrenching grief they felt at the cross has turned to numbness.  The questions now focus on what we do next.  Preparations are being made for the life after Jesus.  There seems to be no thought of what will happen the next morning.  We know how this story ends, but those living it do not see a good conclusion at all.

Well…early the next morning – the third day – the miracle of all miracles occurred at the tomb.  Just like He promised, Jesus rose from the dead!  He proved death could not hold Him.  He showed all the world He had all power in Heaven and earth.  He also showed His disciples He was a man of His word for He had told them much earlier, “…Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.”  (John 2:19 NKJV).  Jesus kept His promise!

I have got to tell you there have been many times I have lived out the truths of this story in my own experience.  I have had those Friday experiences when my dreams died only to be followed by Sunday when resurrection occurred.  When I tell my story, it usually has those two components – Friday’s trial and Sunday’s victory.  But what about that day in between?  I do not talk much about Saturday.

The truth is, Saturday is very important to my story.  I would even say finding my victory on Sunday is dependent on how I live out my Saturday.  No matter how bad Friday was, I will never make it to my triumphant Sunday if I give up on Saturday.  I must keep the faith on Saturday.

Saturday is when I accept the fact I have done all I can – there is nothing left for me to try.  Saturday is when I put everything in the hands of the Lord – I place my full trust in Him.  Saturday is when my trust in God calls for me to rest in Him – I simply wait for Him to perform His will.  Saturday is not a day to lose hope – it is actually when hope is incubated to become faith.  Faith is developed on Saturday.

So…here you are.  You have prayed and claimed the promises.  You have fought hard and done everything you know to do.  You really thought your answer would have been here by now, but it has not come.  You are tempted to throw in the towel and accept the fact it is not coming – it must not be the will of God.  But hold on just a minute…it is just now Saturday!  Sunday is resurrection day, and it is not here yet.  No matter what you see, how you feel or what they say – God will keep His promise to you.  Do not give up on Saturday!

Here is the plan the devil does not want you to know.  It works every time.  This is what we will call the Strategy for Saturday.

Rest in the Lord.  The battle has been long and hard.  You have fought valiantly.  You have kept fighting and believing when many others have quit and walked away.  You are tired.  Your exhaustion is causing you to let your guard down and doubt is beginning to creep in – not intentionally but it is happening, nonetheless.  It is time to retreat to the arms of the Father and let Him hold you for a while.  This is not giving up – it is being refreshed and strengthened.  It is in this moment of stillness revelation will come to you.

“Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.  The Lord of Hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.  Selah.  (Psalm 46:10-11 MEV)

Listen to the Holy Spirit.  There are many voices trying to get your attention.  Listening to all the chatter of this age will simply frustrate and confuse you.  Peace and revelation come when you listen to the Holy Spirit.  He will guide you into truth and lead you on a right path.  He will settle your spirit and restore your joy.  He will come alive in you replacing your weakness with His power.  Get in the Bible and let the Holy Spirit speak to you!

Start expecting victory.  Your Friday experience is not the end of the story.  It looked bad…it was bad!  Your hurt and disappointment are real.  The report you have been given does not lend itself to much hope.  But…it is just Saturday – Sunday is coming!  Here is what separates the believer from the unbeliever – the unbeliever sees facts that tell him it is over; the believer gets his facts from the Word of God which tells him it is not over until God says it is over.  Choose to believe the Word and start expecting your victory!

You will be able to keep the faith on Saturday when you rest in the Lord; listen to the Holy Spirit and start expecting victory.  That is a pretty good strategy with which to live your life.

I have vivid memories of a time of great stress and battle I faced as a college student.  I loved the Lord with all my heart and did my best to serve Him, but this did not stop the attack of the enemy upon my life.  I wanted very much to find my place in God’s plan, but it seemed everything I tried to do ended in frustration.  I remember feeling pretty tired and weak.

Early one morning the phone in my dorm room rang.  I answered to the voice of a dear lady in my church who loved me and had taken me under her wing.  After some very brief pleasantries she got to the purpose of her call.  I’ll never forget her words to me, “Les, I was praying for you this morning.  The Lord told me I should call you and direct you to a verse of Scripture.  I am at work right now so I do not have time to discuss it – we will talk later.  I just want you to go and read Philippians 1:6.”

I immediately picked up my Bible and found the verse to which my friend had directed me.  “Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.” (Philippians 1:6 NKJV).  I began to tremble as I felt the Holy Spirit speaking directly to me.  I read and reread that verse.  I wrote it on a piece of paper and placed in my wallet.  I memorized it.  This was a Word from the Lord to me and I was not letting it go!

That day – and today – this verse told me regardless of my present situation, God had begun a good work in my life.  It also told me regardless of my present situation, the work He had begun would be completed and there was nothing the devil or anyone else could do to stop it.  I believed it then and I believe it now!

Many reading this right now find themselves in a place of great stress and trial.  It looks like the promise has died and all hope is lost.  You are hearing some experts tell you it is impossible – it is over.  Your flesh is reminding you of what you witnessed Friday – it is hard to see any good coming from that.  Logic tells you giving up is your best option.  But…I remind you Sunday has not gotten here yet.  Do not quit now – you have got to keep the faith on Saturday. Your God will not fail you.  He will see you through.







2 thoughts on “Keeping the Faith on Saturday

  1. Love this! I can’t tell you how many times in my life I’ve had to remind myself that Sunday’s on the way and joy comes in the morning!

    Like

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