During the summers before my freshman and sophomore years in college, I was privileged to do research at a hospital medical laboratory. The first summer, my physician leader was a young resident physician, training in general surgery. He was arrogant, cocky, and overbearing...and that was when he was in a good mood!
It was a rough summer but I learned many important lessons. The next summer, I had a different physician leader. He was an experienced surgeon from South Africa and the exact opposite of the first physician. When we first met, he looked over my resume and wryly commented, “So you worked with Dr. Smith last year. How was that?”
“It was good.” My quick reply surprised him.
“Oh...well! Glad you thought it was good. I heard he was a terror to everyone, especially the students.”
I answered cautiously, not wishing to offend. “It was difficult,” I slowly began. “But I figured that I should get used to this type of treatment now, before I enter medical school. It will be good preparation.”
The surgeon grinned, “Good optimistic philosophy!”
It was true. My experience taught me that I needed to have a tougher character if I were to survive in the world of medicine and life. And it is even more relevant when I serve God.
If you have raced with men on foot, and they have wearied you, how will you compete with horses?
Jeremiah 12:5 (ESV)
God reminds us that to serve in His Kingdom, we must prepare ourselves, above and beyond what we think we can or could do. And this is only possible if we yield our lives to Him in complete submission. Only by confessing our sins to Jesus Christ, repenting, and turning to Him as our Lord and Savior, will we be able to compete with what the world and the enemy confront us. It is a solemn and sacred duty that God calls us to follow. But it will be good preparation for a lifetime in eternity with Him.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.