Paul has made it clear that salvation is by grace through faith alone. But don’t kid yourself. What you sow is exactly what you will reap. If we want a good harvest we must plant a good crop. In this life if we plant to our flesh we will reap 28 never surrendercorruption. But if we plant to the Spirit we will reap a good harvest now and in eternity. Yet, some crops take longer to mature than others. The really good ones take the longest time. Those that take a long time usually require some personal effort, if in no other way, just in perseverance. As Paul gets ready to close his letter to the Galatians he writes in Galatians 6:9-10, “And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.”

Although all believers will go to heaven, don’t kid yourself, but all believers won’t receive the same reward. God’s righteous justice comes to play at the Bema (judgment) seat of Christ. Although our sins have been judged and settled on the cross, our works will be evaluated in the end. The author of the books of Hebrews points out, “For God is not unjust so as to overlook your work and the love that you have shown for his name in serving the saints…” The problem is we all face the trials of life that make us want to quit. I just want to give up, cash in my chips, throw in the towel, etc. One of my favorite movie quotes is from Tim Allen’s starring role in “Galaxy Quest.” Playing the part of the commander (like James T. Kirk) his favorite line is “never give up, never surrender!” The night after the Golden Gloves in 1963, that didn’t turn out well for me, I found this poem (by Edgar Guest) on my desk in my bedroom. My father had left it.

When things go wrong as they sometimes will,
When the road you’re trudging seems all up hill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest if you must, but don’t you quit.
Life is queer with its twists and turns,
As every one of us sometimes learns,
And many a failure turns about
When he might have won had he stuck it out;
Don’t give up though the pace seems slow–
You may succeed with another blow,
Success is failure turned inside out–
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell how close you are,
It may be near when it seems so far;
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit–
It’s when things seem worst that you must not quit.