Perseverance is not my favorite word. It means to continue a course of action in spite of difficulties. There are other ways to say it: hang in there, keep going, remain, stand firm, stick at it, don’t give up.
I believe perseverance is what it is going to take for every believer to finish well. It is going to take perseverance to believe God even when we don’t see evidence of what He is doing, or we witness what appears to be contrary evidence.
When challenges arise, it will take perseverance to believe God’s heart is good and His ways are perfect. Perseverance will help you love sacrificially, obey His leading, pray when you don’t want to, praise when you don’t feel like it, stay when you feel like leaving, and embrace when you feel like giving up.
Remember, Jesus continually demonstrated perseverance.
The book of 2 Thessalonians is an encouragement in perseverance. I would encourage you to read it with that theme in mind. In the third chapter, Paul’s request for prayer is our prayer for each other…
“Finally, dear brothers and sisters, we ask you to pray for us. Pray that the Lord’s message will spread rapidly and be honored wherever it goes, just as when it came to you. Pray, too, that we will be rescued from wicked and evil people, for not everyone is a believer. But the Lord is faithful; He will strengthen you and guard you from the evil one. And we are confident in the Lord that you are doing and will continue to do the things we commanded you. May the Lord lead your hearts into a full understanding and expression of the love of God and the patient endurance that comes from Christ.” 2 Thess. 3:1-5 NLT
We have to let Him lead our hearts into a full understanding and expression of the love of God and the patient endurance that comes from Christ. Jesus gave His life away to reach others – in life and in death. He is maturing us, changing our hearts, building our faith, deepening our love for Him and for others, helping us put love into action, and teaching us to stand firm and endure patiently. He is not asking us to do something He didn’t willingly do Himself. Every believer, all through the centuries, has been called to do likewise.
No matter how you consider perseverance – it is not easy. However, it is easier when you resolve the issue in your mind. To persevere is a choice, an attitude of the will. It is driving a stake into the ground and saying, thus far, the Lord has led me, and I will choose to follow Him.
Father, I want to follow where You lead, in Your time – take Your way, at whatever cost. I will endure as You give me strength. I will choose to praise and to pray. I will seek a full understanding and seek to express the love of God with patient endurance, through You who give me strength! Thank You that You have promised to be faithful, to strengthen me, and to guard me from the evil one. In Jesus’ powerful and precious Name, Amen!
What would help you persevere in your current situation? What new attitudes, or “stakes in the ground”, would help you not give up or give in?