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Friday, April 26, 2019

The Source of Perseverance

I am struggling with where to go with this post.  Some weird things have occurred in the last couple of days, I may share those later.  Further, I have sustained ministry in sub Saharan Africa in the past year, in doing so I have encountered strong elements of the Word of Faith heresy.  It surfaces in many places but primarily in multiple discussions I have had about prayer.
The Source of Perseverance
I am sitting in the Rotary House Hotel across the street from MD Anderson.  You have to be a patient or have family that is in the hospital to stay here.  I have stayed here for both reasons, this time it is the first.  There have been multiple obstacles in our path in the past several years.  It would have been reasonable, I suppose, to quit and just coast for the rest of our lives.  Neither my wife nor I am wired that way.

Why?  What is it that equips one with perseverance?  What is it that gives one the desire to keep going when it is difficult?

Look at these passages:
Romans 5:3 – 5 (here @ Bible Gateway)
Romans 15:5 – 6 (here @ Bible Gateway)
James 1:2 – 4 (here @ Bible Gateway)
1 Peter 1:6 – 9 (here @ Bible Gateway)

Now consider these passages on prayer:
Mark 11:22 – 25 (here @ Bible Gateway)
John 14:13 – 14 (here @ Bible Gateway)
John 15:16 (here @ Bible Gateway)
John 16:23 – 26 (here @ Bible Gateway)
1 John 5:14 – 15 (here @ Bible Gateway)

I couldn’t resist putting in that last list, it is too fresh.

Focus on the first if you have time look at the second and make observations.  I will share mine in the next post.


  1. Truly, I struggle with you in this. It is a good exercise, for sure. And since tribulation is promised us the true believer has no choice but to engage in the battle for it. It is true that God wants all His children pain free, trouble free, prosperous etc, etc. But I can't see it promised here. We are His workmanship ("masterpiece" says one translator) (Eph.2:10), an interesting metaphor to pursue. The inspired writers you gave us portray suffering as shaping us, getting us ready for the glory of eternity with Him endless eternity (redundant to strengthen the point).

    I find it easy to affirm and understand this truth. Living it is something entirely different. I have never in my life that I can remember have been so ready to "give up." And I'm not even sure what that means; it just sounds more pleasant than the present.

    I'd just like to be free of some of the pain, would like a host of things "go better." But then I talk to one of my children, or consider what friends of mine are experiencing or recently have, or conditions in other communities or down around the Christian rescue mission in our own town (as I did yesterday). Not to mention those who are headed for a Christless eternity.

    I'd like to give up. But although I struggle, I can't....

    I eagerly look forward to your next thoughts, and keep praying for you and your family. What glory in heaven awaits, "great will be your reward...."

    1. This is good stuff. Kind of makes my thoughts moot.