Romans 2:7 "Some people, by always continuing to do good, live for God’s glory, for honor, and for life that has no end. God will give them life forever."
There is a story of a little boy who became very upset when his favorite popsicle flavor was discontinued. When his mother suggested he do something about it, he thought it wouldn’t do any good. He was just a little kid, the big corporation wouldn’t listen to him, especially since he couldn’t even vote. His mother still encouraged him, so he tried. With the help of his friends, he launched a petition drive getting 130 signatures. The kids also made picket signs and finally one rainy day the boy and almost a dozen family members marched at the popsicle headquarters.
Seeing this, the CEO invited the boy inside. He listened to the children's plea, explained where the company stood, and what it cost the company to change the flavor. Yet in the end the CEO changed his mind, the boy won his petition, and the flavor was brought back.
Although the boy felt insufficient for such a big change and probably felt it a lost cause, he persevered, and it made a difference. Looking at the definition it reads: persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success.
Although we face an upward battle in this world to spread the good news and shine the light of Jesus to others, the Lord expects us to go out with perseverance anyway. He asks us to speak up when things are not following God's word. He asks us to be persistent even if success is delayed. He has said, He will help us and lead us, we just need to be ready to take a stand. Let's look at this anagram I found and expound a little on it.
P- PRESS ON toward the goal- Philippians 3:14 “I keep trying to reach the goal and get the prize for which God called me through Christ to the life above.”
Our goal salvation, God's will for all, salvation. No matter what we face, press on, the goal is before us, and we can and will reach it because it matches the Lord's will.
E- ENDURANCE will produce character and hope- Romans 5:3-5 “We also have joy with our troubles, because we know that these troubles produce patience. And patience produces character, and character produces hope. And this hope will never disappoint us, because God has poured out his love to fill our hearts. He gave us his love through the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to us.”
In any race endurance gets you to the end. No matter what we face we know the end is heaven and that gives us hope not to give up and along the way God is helping build our character to be like Him.
R- RUN with endurance- Hebrews 12:1-3 “We are surrounded by a great cloud of people whose lives tell us what faith means. So let us run the race that is before us and never give up. We should remove from our lives anything that would get in the way and the sin that so easily holds us back. Let us look only to Jesus, the One who began our faith and who makes it perfect. He suffered death on the cross. But he accepted the shame as if it were nothing because of the joy that God put before him. And now he is sitting at the right side of God’s throne. Think about Jesus’ example. He held on while wicked people were doing evil things to him. So do not get tired and stop trying.”
No matter the obstacle, keep moving forward in faith. Look to Jesus for strength and our example. Never give up, just keep trying.
S- STEADFAST and immovable- 1 Corinthians 15:58 “So my dear brothers and sisters, stand strong. Do not let anything move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your work in the Lord is never wasted.”
One of my favorite sayings. Plant your roots deep in Jesus so when trials come, roadblocks appear, you can be like a tree and not be moved. Stand for Jesus, keeping to your call to share the gospel to the world.
E- God will help you ESCAPE and ENDURE- 1 Corinthians 10:13 “The only temptation that has come to you is that which everyone has. But you can trust God, who will not permit you to be tempted more than you can stand. But when you are tempted, he will also give you a way to escape so that you will be able to stand it.”
Trials will come but God has your back and will help give you a way through them. Knowing this can help you endure whatever comes your way.
V- Remember that you toil not in VAIN- Galatians 6:9 “We must not become tired of doing good. We will receive our harvest of eternal life at the right time if we do not give up.”
There will be a day when the Lord returns, He has promised that. Like farmers at harvest, the work they put in will produce a good crop. Even if they don’t see it at first, they must put in the work. Such is our work for Jesus. Even if we don’t see it, at salvation all our efforts will have helped the harvest. Nothing is wasted when you work alongside Jesus.
E- Find ENCOURAGEMENT- Romans 15:4 “Everything that was written in the past was written to teach us. The Scriptures give us patience and encouragement so that we can have hope.”
When you feel you just can’t go on and the road seems unpassable, open God’s Word, read the scriptures and find that extra wind of hope to keep pressing on.
R- REJOICE in hope- John 16:33 “I told you these things so that you can have peace in me. In this world you will have trouble but be brave! I have defeated the world.”
Remember God’s will? Salvation for all. Jesus came to give us assurance and hope and He endured and overcame the world. In tribulations, when we feel the walls, rejoice. Jesus’ death was not in vain, it was to open the doors to fulfill His will. We too can and will be part of that victory when we press on.
A – Be AWARE of your ADVERSARY -1 Peter 5:8 “Control yourselves and be careful! The devil, your enemy, goes around like a roaring lion looking for someone to eat.”
We know the devil is prowling around to destroy us. That doesn’t mean we quit. It means we trust God all that much more to protect us and HE has promised to do just that.
N- God shall supply all you NEED- Philippians 4:19 “My God will use his wonderful riches in Christ Jesus to give you everything you need.”
It’s right there, you can’t argue with scripture. Go forth with confidence in spreading the Good News. God will give you all you need to win the race.
C- A CROWN of life is your reward- James 1:12,18 “When people are tempted and still continue strong, they should be happy. After they have proved their faith, God will reward them with life forever. God promised this to all those who love him. 18 God decided to give us life through the word of truth so we might be the most important of all the things he made.”
Salvation, heaven, restored with Jesus. Those who finish races always receive at least a ribbon for enduring through to the end. What an even greater prize we have before us when we persevere through this world to the end. Life with Jesus.
E- ENCOURAGE one another- 1 Thessalonians 5:11 “So encourage each other and give each other strength, just as you are doing now.”
In everything we do it’s always nice to have a friend with us. We can support each other, cheer each other on, encourage each other not to give up. There is always strength in numbers verses tackling this world alone. Find those friends, be that friend and let’s finish this race towards God’s will, salvation for all men.
Because of satan and sin this world will never be easy to navigate through. There will be trials, tribulation, and temptations along the way. But when you set out to achieve the Lord’s will go with perseverance and never feel you are too inadequate to accomplish all He asks from you. Nothing will come easy, there will be stumbling blocks, but persistence will lead you to victory when you allow God to lead along the way. All it takes is one person to be that voice and take a stand, be that person today.
Have you been able to further your studies through the Bible along with me through 1 Peter? That's okay if you haven't or you have another reading plan you are in the middle of. It's just always good to take a few more minutes out of our days to dig deeper in the Bible allowing the Lord to share, lead and guide us while our roots grow deeper in Him. If you would like to start with us in this study you can find a link each week to the lesson we are on and on my previous blogs the links will follow each week. Or, like I have said, if you just prefer to read the passage on your own and let the Holy Spirit lead you that's great too! Today we will be reading 1 Peter 2:11-25 and there is a link below to a short lesson to help guide you along if you would like.
Week 3- 1 Peter 2:11-25- https://www.docdroid.net/HmXxhNl/1-peter-week-4-docx
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