Persevere :: By John Lysaught

“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” (Romans 5:1-5, NIV).

Our walk with Jesus is a lifetime journey. We will suffer for Him in our own ways, some more than others, but the troubles we face will create for us perseverance for our walk with Jesus.

God knows each and every one of us. He knows our thoughts, our desires, but most important, He knows our hearts. Because He knows each one of us, He therefore loves each one of us. He loves us so much, that He wants us to be with Him in heaven.

God is sinless and because we are sinful creatures, He had to make a way for us to be with Him. To do this, He sent his Son─His only Son─into the world to be a sacrifice for our sins, and His name is: Jesus Christ. Christ died for our sins so that we could be God’s children. The blood of Jesus washed away our sins so that we may be with the Lord in heaven for all eternity.

This sacrifice is a gift. This gift is not earned but was freely given by Christ to make a way for us to be sinless in the sight of God so we can spend eternity with Him. All you have to do is to accept Him into your heart and believe that He is the risen Son of God.

The walk with Jesus is a lifetime journey. As you walk with Jesus, learn about Him and His teachings and commandments, your life will change for the better. The journey may seem hard at times because the world will do its best to make you stray from your walk with Jesus. The journey is worth the trouble you will find when you walk with Jesus. This is the greatest adventure you can have. Nothing in the world is more fulfilling and satisfying than being one with Jesus and following His ways.

If you know Jesus, you understand what I’m saying. The journey is filled with troubles from the world that will do its best make us stray from our walk with Jesus. The world is filled with all sorts of trouble, sin to be more exact, that if tricked into following, will take you off the path you are walking with Jesus. Do we all fail in this? Yes, but we can ask for forgiveness when we stray and can be led back to the path of righteousness every day be renewing our relationship with Christ by confessing our sins and following his ways.

For me, this is a daily occurrence. I sin every day, not necessarily in action, but in thoughts and desires of worldly temptations. I must do my best to resist these temptations and if I fail, Jesus is there to help me get back on my feet and lead me back to the narrow path toward His eternity.

The world is full of sinful temptations that we are faced with every day, the troubles we face in our walk with Jesus. We must resist those sinful actions and allow Jesus and the Holy Spirit to lead us throughout each day as we navigate this sin filled world we are surrounded by. This can be difficult because our culture is centered now on sinful actions and ungodly ways that Satan uses to try to get us to get off course in our walk with Jesus.

We need to persevere. Each day is a new day that God has blessed us with. Each day is another opportunity to get closer to the Lord and to learn and practice His ways and commands for us as Christians. We must persevere to the end, to finish our walk with Jesus until it is time for us to meet Him face to face in heaven. The walk may be hard at times, but in the grand scheme of eternity, our walk is short.

Perseverance is always looking forward and looking up. Put each day behind you and don’t reflect on the sins you have committed and have been forgiven. Always look forward and look up for the Lord. Pray hard and study hard, every day.

In trials and troubles, persevere in Jesus. Persevere in your walk with Jesus and rebuke the temptations Satan throws your way. Satan knows your weaknesses and will try to capitalize on them to drive a wedge between you and your Savior. He will use every trick he has to make you think you are unworthy and to steer you to a path of destruction. Maybe your weakness is alcohol, or pornography, or drugs, lust, or whatever is contrary to the commands of Christ. It is your duty as a Christian to resist those temptations and persevere in your walk with Christ.

Will you mess up and slip at times? Yes, of course you will because we are all sinful creatures by nature. It’s what you do after you slip up that matters. Do you continue down the path of destruction or do you pray for forgiveness and strength to not slip again? Persevere and ask for forgiveness and renew your mind and heart in Christ Jesus.

For unbelievers who are reading this, this may all seem foreign to you. You think you are doing fine living in the world without Jesus and His free gift of salvation. What you don’t realize is that without Jesus as the center of your existence and daily life, you are on the path to destruction; meaning you are destined to spend eternity in hell and not in heaven. Sounds pretty harsh, right? It’s true. Eternal life in heaven is found only through Christ Jesus.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him” (John 3:16-17, NIV).

You see my unbelieving brothers and sisters, God loved you enough that He sacrificed His Son to take on all of the sins of mankind from all time so you can make the choice to spend eternity with Jesus in heaven or deny Him and spend eternity in hell. It is that simple.

If you don’t know Jesus, the verse above from the book of John makes no sense. It means nothing to you but words of zealous Christians. I hope though that your interest in finding out about Jesus has tickled your mind a little bit so that you will desire to seek out more information about Jesus.

Know this: You are full of sin, just like Christians. The difference between Christians and nonbelievers is that we Christians have accepted Jesus and the sacrifice He made for us on the cross when He died for our sins. We believe in His teachings, His life, and most importantly, His resurrection. By believing in Jesus, our sins─past, present, and future─have been forgiven by our faith in His sacrifice for us. His blood was the sacrifice for our sins so we are made clean and blameless at the judgment.

All you have to do to attain eternal life is to believe in the name of Jesus, that He died for your sins, and was resurrected from the dead and is your Advocate to God the Father. Through Jesus, your sins are forgiven. You can’t earn heaven by doing good deeds, or leading a moral life, or being a good person. You need Jesus to enter into eternity with Him and that is grace. By grace, you don’t have to do anything to earn heaven, but by grace through Jesus Christ, you have that access to heaven.

After you truly and sincerely accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you will become part of the family of God, one of His beloved children. You will change. Your heart will begin to soften and you will be filled with love and compassion and a desire to want to know Jesus more and to walk with Him on the path to eternity.

You will be filled with the Holy Spirit that will be there as your guide and teacher to the things of Jesus. You will want to do the will of Jesus, to participate in his plan of salvation with you. You will be given gifts of the Holy Spirit and you will want to use those gifts for the furtherance of the kingdom of God through works and deeds inspired to you from the Holy Spirit. All you have to do is accept the gift of salvation.

Ask Jesus right now to come into your heart. You won’t be disappointed. If you have been walking with Jesus but have strayed off His path for you, now is the time to renew your relationship with him and ask for strength to get back on the path of righteousness and ask for the strength to persevere to the end.

“But you, dear friends, by building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life” (Jude 1:20-21, NIV).

God bless.

John Lysaught