Persevere–to persist in a state of enterprise, or undertaking in spite of counter-influences, opposition or discouragement. I don’t really like this word. I don’t like the fact I have counter-influences, opposition and at times, if I am honest some discouragement to overcome in my life as a believer. But there it is—if I am going to achieve God’s purpose and plan in my life I have to persevere through each of those things. I have to accept I have an enemy that does not want me to succeed. I have to accept that due to sin in the world, life will not be easy and I have to understand that my soul is subject at times to discouragement. These are the facts.
In I Timothy 6:11 Paul tells Timothy, But you Timothy are a man of God; so run from all these evil things. Pursue righteousness and a godly life, along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness Fight the good fight for the true faith. Hold tightly to the eternal life to which God has called you, which you have confessed so well before many witnesses. I believe this is a word today for many of us. That we put our energies toward pursuing righteousness and the godly life God has set for us. To resist the words of the devil when he would taunt you with “it doesn’t take all that” or “it won’t make a difference, so why bother?” Dear brothers and sisters, your life is making a difference. Your stand before Him and those who are witnessing your life is important.
I have been reading through the book of Jeremiah lately. What an example of perseverance. He stayed true to God’s call and the Word of God faithfully no matter what he had to endure. It is at times, for me a hard story to read. He is so faithful, and the outward reward seems to little and so late….but he did it anyway. I think he knew His God and made a commitment to stand no matter what. We, as believers, need to stay true to those commitments we make in the glorious sunshine, so when the darkness comes we will continue on His chosen path.
Pursue is a word that, to me, must include momentum. If we are actively in motion we will overcome those counter-influences, oppositions and even the discouragements. It is not a waste of time to seek Him and His ways. It is not a waste of time to trust in His promises and callings. It is not a waste of your life to let Him spend you as He chooses. Remember, our life becomes His and it is up to Him to make it count. 2 Corinthians 12:15, And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you.” Take courage and encouragement from those who are walking after Him and His ways. Do not let those who have fallen behind discourage you–but be encouraged by the great cloud of witnesses that have gone on before. It is worth it my friends, it will be worth it all when we see Jesus.