Perseverance Makes Faith Productive

Wait. Don’t you love that word? {Insert sarcastic tone here.} Don’t you love the experience? Sitting in a long line of traffic on an interstate highway… waiting on the phone for the next available representative… Waiting. You do it with such grace and so do I.

Waiting is inherent to our faith. In fact, we will not have a faith that produces unless we have endured something in the journey. 2 Peter 1: 5-8 lists the development of the divine nature within believers, and perseverance stands in the middle; it serves as the connector between faith having been conceived in our hearts and an effective and productive knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.

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, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

It’s natural to want to by-pass the struggle of waiting. Be supernatural. Allow the divine nature of Jesus within you to manifest a holy wait upon the strong arm of God to move and act in accordance with your desire. And the following truth defines what should be at the root of all of our desires:

Yes, Lord, walking in the way of Your laws, we wait for You; Your name and renown are the desire of our hearts (Isaiah 26:8, emphasis added).

I, like you, know the call to perseverance and the suffering it produces. It’s that whole waiting thing… and then the unhealthy dose of doubt kicks in because no desired change can be seen. The Bible states that “hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life” (Proverbs 13:12).

Ahh! The sweet victory we realize when a longing is fulfilled. It’s a special feeling, isn’t it? What do you do in that season? Do you share the wonderful news with others? Do you lift heartfelt praises to God?

Look at what Paul wrote to the believers about suffering and future glory:

The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs- heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in His sufferings in order that we may also share in His glory (Romans 8:16-17).

Nothing of kingdom value comes cheaply. Waiting costs us, but the perseverance that develops is the making of true faith that produces eternal rewards. Paul stated, “I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18).

So we remain mindful of this: while our flesh screams for a quick fix or an escape from the struggle, God prioritizes our character over our comfort. He is working transformation in us while we wait expectantly on His strong arm to move and redeem the circumstance we face.

  • Are you currently enduring a trial that tests your patience?
  • What mental focus do you have during the wait?
  • What promise of God can you declare and facilitate your joyful expectation?

Monday’s post on Sharing Love and Truth will bring understanding to the timing of God. This is a necessary teaching, because we easily perceive God as limited in time and space as we are. I’m looking forward to sharing an elevated perception of how and when God acts, and I hope that you will enjoy visiting the blog and reading it!

 

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