Are you facing all kinds of challenges and issues? Are you discouraged – do you feel defeated? Are you tempted, as they say, to just “throw in the towel?”
Where did that figure of speech come from anyway? They say It comes from boxing… “throwing in the towel” (or sponge) was a sign that a fighter was accepting defeat. The idiom means a person has decided to stop “fighting” because they know that they cannot succeed; they are admitting defeat.
Listen, If anyone had reasons to “throw in the towel” it was Apostle Paul! However, here’s what he said…
“We have this treasure [salvation – having the Lord’s abiding presence within] in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh…Knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence.” (From 2 Corinthians 4:7-14 ESV)
So, regardless of all the adversity Apostle Paul faced, was he ready to “throw in the towel?” Not on your life! He had a perspective that reached beyond what he was going through presently – he had an “eternal perspective” that reached beyond the grave! Here’s what he went on to say…
“So we do not lose heart (we’re not ready to “throw in the towel”)! Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison! We look not to the things that are seen, but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal!” (From 2 Corinthians 4:16–18 ESV)
Oh, I want to have that kind of perspective! I want to keep my life focused on what endures – eternal values! I want to put my attention, efforts and energy in what transcends this life! I’m not ready to “throw in the towel!” Hope you aren’t either!