‘And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us (Romans 5:3-5).’
“Try, try, and try again until you succeed,” and, “Where there’s a will there is a way.”
The end desire will then be accomplished. My mother instilled these attitudes of mind into me. She recognised I was a low achiever, and if I was to get on in life I would need to have the right mindset. I found that if I desired something badly enough, I would strive to get it. When the motivation was there I had no difficulty in persevering. I would try, try and try again, because I had the will to find the way.
These attitudes of mind undoubtedly helped me to achieve more than ever I would have imagined, but what I have come to understand is that none of what I have achieved was because of my own will, but because of God’s will in my life. I could have done nothing without God’s grace.
As I look back on my life over the past 85 years I am full of praise and thankfulness for what God has done. He pulled me out of a good many pits into which I had fallen; He saved my physical *life on many occasions, but most importantly He gave me eternal life in His Son.
With this new life, God has given me a perseverance I never had before He gave me His gift of faith (Ephesians 2:8,9). He made me alive in His Spirit (John 3:3-8). He showed His love for me, and He revealed to me that He loved me so much that He gave His Son to die on a cross in my place. He suffered for the forgiveness of my sins so that I may have eternal life (John 3:16).
The perseverance I now have does not depend on me. It is not my perseverance, but God’s will working in me. Theologically this perseverance is defined as a state of grace that will continue and persist until the coming again of Christ. At that time I shall become like Him, and see Him as He is. I shall enter into His glorious kingdom to live with Him for evermore.
Meanwhile until that time and beyond, His Spirit will never die in me; since He dwells in me forever. Because of this I have a sure hope of eternal life: ‘But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance (Romans 8:25).’
I am truly blessed, for the words of James assure me: ‘Indeed we count them blessed who endure. You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord—that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful (James 5:11).’
Finally I take to heart the words of Christ to the Faithful Church:
‘”Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth (Revelation 3:10).”’
*Struer Limfjorden Racing Kayak [Rescued by a lifeboat]