Perseverance is becoming a lost art

2018-08-05
Passage: 2 Thessalonians 3:13

Perseverance is becoming a lost art.

We are all great perseveres when life is good and well.

How does something become a lost art = you stop doing it.

 

Persevering in spite of obstacles, hardships, discouragement and impossibilities is THIS:  That in all things it distinguishes the strong and faithful from the weak and faithless.

By Pastor George Lehman

 

Perseverance can make miracles happen:

An 8-year old child heard her parents talking about her little brother.  All she knew was that he was very sick and they had no money left.  They were moving to a smaller house because they could not afford to stay in the present house after paying the doctor’s bills.  Only a very costly surgery could save him now and there was no one to loan them the money.

When she heard daddy say to her tearful mother with a whisper, Andrew’s operation, “Only a miracle can save him now’, the child went to her bedroom and pulled a glass jar from its hiding place in the closet.  She poured all the change out on the floor and counted it carefully.  Clutching the precious jar tightly, she slipped out the back door and made her way 6 blocks to the local drug store.  She took 25 cents from her jar and placed it on the glass counter.

“And what do you want?”, asked the pharmacist.  “It’s for my little brother”, the girl answered back.  “He’s really, really sick and I want to buy a miracle.”

“I beg your pardon?” said the pharmacist.  “His name is Andrew and he has something bad growing inside his head and my daddy says only a miracle can save him.  So how much does a miracle cost?”

“We don’t sell miracles here, child, I’m sorry”, the pharmacist said, smiling sadly at the little girl.  “Listen, I have the money to pay for it.  If it isn’t enough, I can try and get some more.  Just tell me how much it costs”.

In the shop was a well-dressed customer.  He stooped down and asked the little girl, “What kind of a miracle does your brother need?”  “I don’t know”, she replied with her eye welling up with tears.  “He’s really sick and mommy says he needs an operation.  But my daddy can’t pay for it, so I have brought my savings”.

“How much do you have?”  asked the man.  “I have 25 cents, but I can try and get some more”, she answered barely audibly.

“Well, what a coincidence,” smiled the man.  25 cents is the exact price of a miracle for little brothers.”  He took her money in one hand and held her hand with the other.  He said, “Take me to where you live.  I want to see your brother and meet your parents.  Let’s see if I have the kind of miracle you need.”

That well-dressed man was Dr Carlton Armstrong, a surgeon specializing in Neuro-surgery.  The operation was completed without charge and it wasn’t long before Andrew was home again and doing well.  “That surgery”, her mom whispered, “was a real miracle.  I wonder how much it would have cost.”  The little girl smiled.  She knew exactly how much the miracle cost – 25 cents … plus the perseverance and faith of a little child.

 

“Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you did.” It’s time to “Hold on – be strong”

2 Thessalonians 3:13 (Amp) - And as for you, brethren, do not become weary or lose heart in doing right [but continue in well-doing without weakening]. (There-in lies the essence of perseverance.)

If you are to succeed spiritually among all the other necessary qualities and strength you especially will need perseverance.

You will need to learn not only how to fight, but how to keep going in the fight until God brings the breakthrough.

Giving up is not in the vocabulary or heart of a disciple. (The fighting spirit has gone!!!)

It’s not a carnal, fleshly getting angry warfare fight.  It’s about a combination of discernment (God’s will for your life), authority (understanding your position of power and anointing) and unwavering faith that needs to live within us.

This means in reality being born of the spirit brings a whole new realm of possibilities, challenges and obstacles.

In other words, we must overcome many things in order to function effectively and victoriously as sons and daughters of God.

Luke 8:15 (NIV) - But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.

True disciples ‘bear fruit’ with perseverance.

The book of Revelation mentions the word perseverance 7 times for a good reason.  It talks about those who persevered and overcame.

There is No place for lukewarm, compromisers, worldly, uncommitted cowards in the Kingdom.

It is one thing to have vision and drive and deep godly motives but none of these will get us far without perseverance.

I’ve seen more 1-lap wonders in my life than what I care to remember. Starting enthusiastically all the noise and confession only to die away as quickly!

The word ‘persevere[volhard, volhou, aanhou] is rooted and found in the word ‘severe’: (Serious, critical, extreme, drastic.)  It’s the exact opposite of slackness, lack of drive, energy and lack of Passion – A lack of desire to press on and press through.

I know from experience that there are times when we will not reach our spiritual goals unless we are stretched in ways others call severe or extreme.

On route to victory, maturity and growth, our trials may be ‘SEVERE’.

People will look at you and think or say how can you give up this or that for your faith, they will watch you endure some tuff stuff and yet you rejoice.

Hebrews 10:36 (Amp) - For you have need of steadfast patience and endurance, so that you may perform and fully accomplish the will of God, and thus receive and carry away [and enjoy to the full] what is promised.

Acts 14:22 (Amp) - Establishing and strengthening the souls and the hearts of the disciples, urging and warning and encouraging them to stand firm in the faith, and [telling them] that it is through many hardships and tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God.

In Jesus’ own words:

Matthew 24:13 (NIV) - The one who endures (perseveres) to the end, he will be saved.

Question:  Has slackness, compromise, lack of enthusiasm been robbing you of your energy and keeping you captive and defeated?

Then may the grace of God and the power of the Holy Spirit awaken within you right now.  The perseverance of Christ.

Romans 15:5 (NIV) - May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus,

Passionate perseverance, endurance and steadfastness these are the qualities that breed character that transforms the teaching of Christlike-ness into a way of life.

James 1:4 (NIV) - Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

Jesus asked: Luke 18:8 – “Will I find faith when I return.”

Hebrews 11:6 – Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

It takes perseverance to maintain faith.

The key to perfection to a life of ‘lacking nothing’ is perseverance.

It’s time to fight with passionate perseverance.

*****

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