About 15 years ago, I got a phone call one Saturday morning from Bob Spurlin from Hartselle, AL. He asked if I would help him sell his new book entitled, Don’t Ever Give Up! He explained that he had been bedridden for nearly nine years and was coping with the disease of Multiple Sclerosis. This disease had him confined to a hospital bed. Being in this condition gave him a special insight into the problems of human suffering.
I later learned that he had preached for over thirty years before MS took control of his life. His family bought him a computer, which he operated with a control from his mouth, because MS had left his hands almost unusable.
Bro. Tom Holland and Bro. Paul Sain provided great encouragement for him to write a book. I ordered enough books for every member of our congregation at Elkins and contacted other churches of Christ in Cannon County about buying his book. Bro. Garland Elkins wrote an introduction for this book, and Bro. Paul Sain published it. (Copies can be purchased from Sain Publications
In fact, Bob wrote three books which reflect his conviction, dedication and faithfulness to the Lord and His church. His first book is entitled, Tackling Life’s Troubles. His second is Dial 911: Essentials to Living. His third book is Don’t Ever Give Up. The cover of this third book shows a crane swallowing a frog that has its hands around the crane’s neck (don’t ever give up).
Bob said that the difficulties and trials of life can be overwhelming at times. Regardless of our station in life, whether we be rich, poor, high on the social ladder or a social outcast, misfortune and hardship will occur to each of us. “Don’t ever give up” is not just a pleasant slogan to the ear, but rather it is the only formula allowing us to meet the hurts and hardships that confront us.
The Bible tells us of all the suffering and hardship that Job endured, all his sons and daughters suffered death, Sabeans took his oxen and donkeys, killing his servants, his sheep died in a fire, enemies raided his camels and destroyed them with a sword, his body was covered with sore boils from the sole of his feet to the crown of his head. The pain was so terrible that he sat down among the ashes (Job 2:8). Job’s wife told him to curse God and die. But Job’s strength was in God and regardless of what his wife said, his loyalty to God was steadfast despite his wife’s wishes.
Job was not one to ask why but answered his wife that she was one that speakest foolishly. In all of this did not Job sin with his lips (Job 2:10). Job’s wife, friends, loss of property, livestock nor the loss of all his children would shake the faith of this patriarch of the Old Testament.
My friends, when calamity and heartaches strike at our door, may we draw strength from our faith in God as did Job and Bob Spurlin. When life seems its worst, “Don’t ever give up” is the only sane and sensible approach in confronting the trials of life. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and never give up!