Across the Pastor’s Desk: Persevere through this journey of life
Across the Pastor’s Desk by Jill Marin
As we travel through this journey of life together, we have much in common. However, we are each on our own individual path as well. At times, those paths may seem rocky; they may seem lonely; and, they may seem long. Sometimes, we may become weary along the way. God’s Word encourages us to persevere.
When the path is rocky, it can be full of challenges. Some of these challenges are brought on by battle, some are brought on by our own choices and some are brought on by life itself. As we wage battle, we can remember, “You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” 1 John 4:4. And, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” James 1:2-4. When our own choices have produced rocks in our path ahead, “…let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith…” Heb. 12:1-2. And, when we encounter those rocky times in life, when things seem to happen for no good reason, we can find peace. “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Rom. 8:28. Persevere.
Many times, the path can feel lonely along the way. We can go through tests and trials and feel as though no one is with us or understands. There is blessing to be found. “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. Remember, God is with us. “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isa. 41:10. Persevere.
Sometimes, the path seems so long. We don’t know when a change will come or when this path may end. We can expect good. “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.” Gal. 6:7-10. And, perseverance brings hope. “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” Rom. 5:1-5. Persevere.
My friends, do not grow weary and lose heart. The Lord is with us throughout our journey. Keep the faith. Keep the love. Keep the kindness. Persevere.
Jill Marin is a pastor at Grace Christian Church in Albert Lea.