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Perseverance: An Essential Trait

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Perseverance is important for our Christian walk. It doesn’t really matter how strong you start. It’s all about how you finish. Many Christians start out extraordinarily strong, but because they don’t have this important trait called perseverance they don’t last long. I’ve seen many Christians excited about their newly found faith that they begin to witness to others, share their testimonies, pray for the sick, but after a few trials they don’t move forward. Many become stuck and never get back up.

King David found that an important place to persevere was in God’s Presence. He said it was his most important desire:

One thing I have desired of the Lord, that will I seek: That I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, And to inquire in His temple. Psalm 27:4

Everyone has most likely gone through tough times and seen difficulties. We need to be people who can persevere during life’s storms. Maybe you haven’t been able to go to church due to COVID-19 restrictions, however, don’t let that bring you down. Look to Jesus. Strengthen yourself in Him. It’s important during these times that we have a strong personal relationship with God.

We need strength of character to defeat the odds and see God’s victory in every circumstance. We are in some unprecedented times, many hearts are growing cold, however, we need to stand out in these difficult times. Even if it feels like no one else is with you. There were many others in the Bible who felt that way at one point or another. Let’s look at a few examples:

1.    Caleb’s perseverance brought him his promise

was forty years old when Moses the servant of the Lord sent me from Kadesh Barnea to spy out the land, and I brought back word to him as it was in my heart. Nevertheless my brethren who went up with me made the heart of the people melt, but I wholly followed the Lord my God. Joshua 14:7, 8

When everyone else was discouraging the people, Caleb and Joshua stood up with a greater perspective. They knew that their God would fight for them. Caleb had a different attitude and perspective than the other spies. The others thought they were going to die and, therefore, there was no sense even going to battle.

Caleb’s heart was faithful to God. He says that he “wholly followed the Lord my God.” Caleb didn’t just do it when it was the popular thing to do. He followed God when the rest of the crowd was against it. Caleb didn’t just believe it for one year or two. He persevered for forty-five years before he saw his promise fulfilled. Caleb remained faithful and so he received God’s promise.

2.      David lost everything, but still his heart remained faithful

So David and his men came to the city, and there it was, burned with fire; and their wives, their sons, and their daughters had been taken captive. Then David and the people who were with him lifted up their voices and wept, until they had no more power to weep. And David’s two wives, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail the widow of Nabal the Carmelite, had been taken captive. Now David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God1 Samuel 30:3-6

Here we see once again, David persevered even when he wasn’t making the popular choice. He was going to follow God even though everyone else was giving up. We need perseverance. Even though David lost everything he owned and loved, his heart remained devoted to God and he served him faithfully.

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What do you do when things don’t go your way? How do you react when things get taken from you? When your friends or people you helped turn on you? David shows us something important. We must strengthen ourselves in God. Don’t give up so easily. Persevere and you will see things turn around in your favour.

3.      Joseph didn’t grow bitter, his perseverance made him better

So it was, when his master heard the words which his wife spoke to him, saying, “Your servant did to me after this manner,” that his anger was aroused. Then Joseph’s master took him and put him into the prison, a place where the king’s prisoners were confined. And he was there in the prison.But the Lord was with Joseph and showed him mercy, and He gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison. And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners who were in the prison; whatever they did there, it was his doing. Genesis 39:19-22

Potiphar’s wife falsely accused Joseph of some major charges. He didn’t have any hope of parole, because it appeared that he had tried to rape the wife of a very powerful man. Potiphar became furious when he heard that the man, he had entrusted everything, tried to rape his wife. Of course we know that all the accusations were untrue, but naturally speaking without God on his side he wouldn’t have seen the breakthrough and deliverance that he desired.

Even though Joseph knew they falsely accused him and his heart was right, he didn’t let that bother him. Most people would have become bitter. Other would have turned their backs on God. Joseph placed his hope in the God he served. His twenty years of perseverance brought deliverance not only to him but to the nations of the world.

Don’t let your circumstance wear you down. Rise above and see how God works on your behalf.

4.      Daniel ‘s perseverance brought great breakthrough

Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days. Daniel 6:10

Daniel knew that it was prohibited for him to pray. He knew his fate was in the lion’s den, yet he still did his usual routine. He opened his windows and prayed to God. Daniel wasn’t going to let the law stop him from doing what was morally right.

God saw Daniel’s faithfulness. He answered many of his prayers and He even kept the lion’s mouths shut so that he could have peace in front of the hungry lions. Daniel’s faith persevered and ours must too.

Conclusion:

In 2020 we must decide to persevere. There are many attacks and discouragement is happening all over. However, we must remain pure. Dedicate your heart and life to Jesus today! Ask him to give you the strength to overcome in every circumstance.

Steven Stoffelsen

Trusting God’s Timing

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