What is perseverance? According to the Oxford dictionary perseverance is persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success. When we are studying towards a degree and despite financial difficulties or failing a few subjects along the way we persevere and reach our goal. When our job is tough and the people are mean, but we have a certain number of sales to make, we persevere until we make that last sale and receive the reward.
In our Christian walk we need perseverance, we need to persist through the hardships, the persecutions and the suffering. The Bible says in Romans that suffering produces perseverance, “Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.” (Romans 5:3-4). That is how gracious our Father in heaven is, everything happens for a reason. We go through suffering so that perseverance can be built up in us. Perseverance is vital to our growth as children of God.
Perseverance produces character. Character is what sets us apart from the world. It is out of our character that we react to the things that happen in the world.
Here are a few scriptures that speak about perseverance:
Apart from character, perseverance gives life. In James we read that, “Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” (James 1:12). When we persevere through the test and trials of life and the things the enemy throws at us, we receive the crown of life. That being eternal life with God in heaven.
It is to receive that eternal life, that crown that we should persevere through the troubled times. That we should look to the Father and ask the Spirit for guidance and comfort. Our faith is being built up in Jesus because he persevered for us, he endured the cross for the joy set before him. That joy being us reconciled with the Father forever.
The key to perseverance, and all things, is faith. Faith in our Lord, faith in his good works and the plans he has for us. If we have faith in God’s plan, we will be able to persevere. “For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love.” (2 Peter 1:5-7)