We have it in our heads that if we struggle with temptation, if we fall into sin from time to time, there must be something terribly wrong with us. Everyone else seems fine. We must be pretenders. But the truth is everyone struggles with something. The battle itself is part of living in the already … but not yet dilemma.
Through the cross Jesus overcame sin and nailed them on it. Yet still we have to fight the battle against sin. And I am convinced we will fight that battle until the day we die.
That’s basically what the writer of Hebrews says.
God uses the struggle against sin to grow us, so don’t be surprised by it.
Don’t be discouraged by it.
Fight the fight (Hebrews 12).
Since we are surrounded by so many examples of faith, we must get rid of everything that slows us down, especially sin that distracts us. We must run the race that lies ahead of us and never give up. We must focus on Jesus, the source and goal of our faith. He saw the joy ahead of him, so he endured death on the cross and ignored the disgrace it brought him. Now he holds the honored position—the one next to God the Father on the heavenly throne. Think about Jesus, who endured opposition from sinners, so that you don’t become tired and give up.
You struggle against sin, but your struggles haven’t killed you. You have forgotten the encouraging words that God speaks to you as his children:
“My child, pay attention when the Lord disciplines you. Don’t give up when he corrects you.
The Lord disciplines everyone he loves. He severely disciplines everyone he accepts as his child.”
Endure your discipline. God corrects you as a father corrects his children. All children are disciplined by their fathers. If you aren’t disciplined like the other children, you aren’t part of the family. On earth we have fathers who disciplined us, and we respect them. Shouldn’t we place ourselves under the authority of God, the father of spirits, so that we will live? For a short time our fathers disciplined us as they thought best. Yet, God disciplines us for our own good so that we can become holy like him. We don’t enjoy being disciplined. It always seems to cause more pain than joy. But later on, those who learn from that discipline have peace that comes from doing what is right.
Strengthen your tired arms and weak knees. 13 Keep walking along straight paths so that your injured leg won’t get worse. Instead, let it heal. Try to live peacefully with everyone, and try to live holy lives, because if you don’t, you will not see the Lord.”
Every single one of God’s children lives between the “already” and the “not yet.”
Already Jesus reigns, but His final kingdom has not yet come.
Already sin has been defeated, but it has not yet been completely destroyed.
Already God has given you his Word, but it has not yet totally transformed your life.
Already you have been given grace, but God’s grace has not yet finished its work.
We all must wait for the final end of the work that God has begun in and for us.
But be assured, GOD IS AT WORK EVERYDAY!
“He who began a good work in you will will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”
 Hebrews 12:1-14 GW