Perseverance Brings About ChangeJessica Ralph, Editor

 By 

Jessica Ralph

GOING FORTH MAGAZINE

 

 

 

James 1:2 “Consider it pure joy my brothers whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

When times are good, our needs are met and we feel we are at our highest point in life, we find ourselves exalting God and being appreciative for what he has bestowed upon us.  We think that things can only continue to get better and we have an expectancy that God will take us even higher in Him. When we find ourselves being granted with so much, it is easy to assume that God will continuously overflow us with bountiful blessings. But when we are in the midst of tests and trials, does our outlook towards God remain the same? 

We pursue God for answers to our questions and seek him when we are uncertain of how to handle unforeseen situations and when we become desperate for him to perform a positive change in our life, we press in to bring it about. Or do we?  It’s easier for us to just sit back and see how God will change our situation but God’s response is to see how we are going to bring our change about. You see, we have the power to bring our change into existence through our faith attached to God’s works. God cannot perform alone; he needs our willingness in addition to his capability. Yes, he can do all things at any time – after all, it is GOD we are talking about, but spiritual growth comes about through perseverance, the testing of our patience and trusting him to work all things out for our good.  

Nothing is too big nor too small for God to answer. We are speaking of a man who’s power parted red seas, healed the woman with the issue of blood and caused the walls of Jericho fall. After being reminded of this, do you think that your request is too big to be answered? If such a miracle of multiplying five loaves of bread and two fish enabled thousands to be fed, we shouldn’t be too afraid to send up our requests to a mountain moving God! If Moses was too afraid to hold out his rod and command the sea to part then the Israelites would have had no way of escape. If the woman with the blood disease (Mark 5:25) refused to believe that Jesus could cure her condition then it would not have changed. And Joshua sweated bullets marching around those walls but he won the battle because of His shouts unto the Lord (Joshua 4:19). These people were tired! Moses led all of Israel in the desert for three days without water (Exodus 15:22), the woman with the issue of blood had little strength in her body but she was determined to touch the hem of his garment and Joshua was doing a marathon around those walls shouting his lungs out but they all still pressed forward. Talk about perseverance! 

I don’t think any one of us have encountered such troublesome times as these but we ought to be thankful for the tough seasons that we face for they are only brought about to make us more stronger and reliant on God. He has such strength and will pour it out on us in our times of difficulty. Spiritual growth is a process; how can we attain it if we don’t walk through some storms and challenges? God must place us in circumstances that develop our character and this is what perseverance grants us (Romans 5:4).

Only we can bring change about in our life. We face choices everyday and have to decipher between the things that will advance us and the things that will detour us from the path of righteousness. As Christians, we want to abide in an atmosphere that makes it possible to feel God’s power but we have to create that atmosphere for ourselves. If it means that we have to experience a season of hardship and uncertainty in order to experience such depths to God’s mercy, would we endure it? Moses did, Joshua did and so did the woman with the fatal blood disease. Did God meet their need in the end? Yes. Will he meet ours? Absolutely.

 


PRAYER

Father, I pray for positive changes in my life and I believe that they will be brought about as I persevere in you. May I remain patient as you bring forth the specified timing of your promises.  Help me to remain righteous and to seek you first in all things.

In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

Reflection Questions:

 

1.) How does this devotional relate to a circumstance that you are going through?

 

2.) What brings about positive changes in your life?

 

3.) What is God trying to teach you through tests and trials?

 

4.) What will happen as a result of you persevering towards God?

 

For more great articles, interviews and more, check out Jessica's wonderful site, Going Forth Magazine. Thanks to Jessica for allowing us to share this article with our readers!