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Hello Swamp Blog Readers!

I hope you had a super great and fun weekend. By the time this gets to your inbox, many of you will probably be tired out from partying hard at the Swamp's anniversary celebration! (I know I will be.) Quick reminder: there is still time to register for the Father Son Retreat (Nov. 10-12.) A link to register will be below.

It's about that time. Midterms. Mid-sports season. Middle of a lot of things. Life can start to seem very routine around this time, and it can become hard to remember the goals we set over the Summer or at the beginning of the school year. There are many days I wake up and feel like I need a pep-talk just to go to class. And, it doesn't just affect school. The tiredness affects our desires to read our Bible, make it to church, and even just put our daily focus on God. So, here is a little pep-talk (3 reasons) to persevere when it feels hard.

1) God sees the work you are doing

" Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him."

-James 1:12

(God pointing at you.)

Even though it may not seem like it sometimes, God sees everything you do for Him. That includes when you work hard at school or at work to honor Him. All the little things we think no one sees, God sees.

2) You won't be able to achieve what you're working for, if you give up!

"No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it."

-Hebrews 12:11

As hard as having discipline can seem, it produces an incredible reward for those who have been trained by it. How are you going to be able to get that grade, have that awesome friendship, or develop that great relationship with God if you give up?

3) Times of refreshing are to come.

"The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul."

-Psalm 23:1-3

Sometimes, it's good to take ourselves out of the situation and just think about what things will be like after the hard work is done. I love having something to look forward to when I'm starting to feel overwhelmed by responsibilities. Maybe you can think about your next time at Swamp, or a Swamp Corps trip you're going on in a couple months, or maybe your next exciting teen or middle school ministry hangout.

Hope you guys are feeling a little more motivated. Until next week!

Much Love & Respect, Julie

Sign up HERE for the Father Son Retreat! (Nov. 10-12)

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