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GROWING IN CHRIST

"Perseverance"

Date published: 12/22/2014
James 1:4 “Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (NIV) 

   What do you think of when you hear the word perseverance? Do you think of hanging on, gutting out difficult times, enduring hardships? Probably your images would be of negative and difficult times instead of great times. Paul redefines perseverance as a powerful medium for God to work in you. God uses perseverance to craft your character, maturity, and relationship with Him.  Conversely, we live in a world that quickly discourages perseverance because of expectations, contentment, shortcuts, and the “get it quick” mentality.  This type attitude can quickly transform your relationship with God from one of providence, lordship, Godliness, and fruitfulness to what you and the world consider what is best for you. God is more committed to making you like Christ than making you comfortable!  Hebrews 5:8-9 highlights this in Jesus’ life, “Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from what He suffered and, once made perfect, He became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey Him.” (NIV) Seeing difficult times from a new set of eyes opens your life to God not only crafting great things in you, but also doing great things through you.  

    Your ability to persevere is aided by taking your focus off self and putting it on God. You begin to live life with an eternal perspective instead of temporarily in the present.  It is this type of perseverance that leads to maturity and completeness which ultimately is what produces satisfaction. Psalm 111:3 reflects the position of one who perseveres in this way, “Glorious and majestic are His deeds, and His righteousness endures forever.” (NIV)  

Psalm 57:7 “My heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast; I will sing and make music.” (NIV) 

   Do you know someone who needs this message on perseverance? If so, forward them this devotion as a blessing for their growth in Christ. 

   Resources on perseverance: “Hard Times” will teach you perseverance from multiple perspectives. 

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