Persistence always pays off. When the situation gets tougher, the persistent will keep going. In any situation, the enemy tries to get us to a place where we will give up. The enemy works through people and through situations. He will try so hard to make us say, ‘enough is enough’. We ought to have a ‘never give up’ mentality day in and day out.
Especially if you are visionary, you are probably the target for the enemy. The enemy is not after people who settle down for mediocrity. He is after the people of vision and integrity. That is why it is so important that we become a people of persistence.
I Cor 15:58 says, ‘…be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not vain in the Lord’. One day all your labor is going to pay off. Your payday is someday. So keep on doing the good and never give up. Phil 4:13 says, ‘I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me’. So, we need to put our trust in the Lord and keep going. If the Lord has called you to do something, he will make all grace abound towards you (2 Cor 9:8).
Jesus taught persistence:
When Jesus was talking about a friend that came at midnight in Lk 11: 8, He says…yet because of his persistence, he will rise. Because of his shameless persistence, he got what he needed. We need to be persistent, for our own good. Persistence is shamelessly going after. Persistence is pursuing wholeheartedly with a sense of urgency. In the same note Jesus says, keep asking, keep seeking and keep knocking (Lk 11: 9,10)
While talking about that persistent widow in Lk 18: 1-8, Jesus teaches us about being patient, persistent and persevering in prayer. We, as children of God ought not to grow weary in waiting for the Lord but we need to persevere in faith.
God is looking for people who are persistent. ‘We have to be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might’ (Eph 6:10). When we are strong in the Lord, nothing is going to shake our faith and cause us to quit. Pro 24:10 says, ‘If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small’.
The enemy comes in like a roaring lion. Why? To see, if we will finally throw in the towel. But that is when we need to be strong. Like David, we need to say, ‘though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil’ for You are with me’ (Ps 23:4). It would be worthless if we depend of our ability. The bottom line is that we put our trust in GOD and in His ability.
Apostle Paul was persistent:
In 2 Tim 4:7,8, Paul writes, I have fought the good fight of faith, I have finished the race, there is laid up for me the crown. There were many hardships for Paul. It was not always easy for Paul to do what he was called to do. But he endured till the end.
2 Cor 11: 23-27 talks about the hardships that Paul went through. It was all for the goal that he was after. In 1Cor 9:24-27, Paul is talking about striving for a crown. When the times get tough, instead of fighting the good fight of faith, people just take the easy way out and quit. If you have tried it once but failed, shake it off and try again. If it doesn’t work, dust yourself off and try all over again.
The Lord Jesus Christ is the best example. For the joy that was set before Him, He endured the cross, despising the shame (Heb 12:2). The Bible does not say, Jesus enjoyed the cross but it says Jesus endured the cross.
Great men were persistent:
The great men of the Bible were persistent. Elisha wanted a double portion of the Spirit that was upon Elijah. In 2 Kings 2:10…Elijah said, if you see me when I am taken, that is when you will get a double portion of the Spirit. It was not at all a path of least resistance. It was a hard route. But Elisha followed Elijah and got what he needed.
Abraham Lincoln was a man of persistence. He lost 11 times in the election. He tried again and again till he got elected as the president of the United States. He is such an inspiration to many even today. He went through the worst tragedy in his life, as you would never believe. He lost two of his children. He has severe health issues one related to his nerves and another connected to his brain. This was all before he was elected president of the United States. The history tells that. Anyone could have easily said, “Let me call it quits”. But he did not drop out of the race. Sure enough, he got the reward.
Are you persistent?
It is so important to rise up and live a life of excellence. God wants you to be successful and prosperous. God wants you to be the winner. It is up to you whether to keep on are to drop off. The choice is yours. God told Joshua,’ Be strong and very courageous three times in a row because there is always a reward for persistence.
Read Joshua 1:6,7 and 9. God wants us to be strong and courageous and not to give up. God was preparing Joshua for the battle. Later Joshua possessed the inheritance. In the same way, we need to learn to persevere before we could see the promise land. For greater victories, there are always greater battles. But the persistent always wins.
You can make up your mind today and say, ‘I am not going to give up’. I am going to trust in the Lord till I achieve what I am supposed to achieve in my life.
May the Lord prepare us to be persistent in Jesus’ name. Amen.