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Prayerful Perseverance

Editorial by Andre Hastick

Perseverance is a noun defined as: “persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success.” If you’re anything like me, you’ve made many plans for your future, only to find out that life is full of unexpected twists and turns. It’s been over a year now that we’ve collectively navigated one of the most unexpected curve balls to date: the global coronavirus pandemic. When the unexpected happens, our once energized life sprint can downgrade to a cautious walk and conclude with merely standing still. And some-times, depending upon the nature of the setback, it can even feel like we’re going backward, with no hope of a turnaround in sight.

Paul brings into focus that the Christian journey requires endurance, even in spite of our circumstances: “And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and per-fecter of faith (Heb. 12:1–2, NIV). Prayerful perseverance is the fuel that will propel us from where we are to where the Lord is calling us to be. The current issues we face suddenly become opportunities to build our faith when entrusted to the Lord. Barriers to our plans contain an often-overlooked blessing, as it can bring us back to our knees to seek help from the only One who is able. When we pray, the One who grants us faith sees us through to the finish line.

There are times, however, when we’re tempted to stew about in frustration instead of surrendering our situation—and yes, even our feelings—at the feet of Jesus in prayer. In my experience, whatever someone chooses to focus on will become larger and more significant in their mind and heart. Therefore, the counsel of Scripture found in Hebrews 12 is deeply valuable and will save us from unnecessary strife. If we just look to Jesus, He will become bigger and more powerful than any challenge we face along the way.

This world is not our home, and the finish line of faith is closer now than it has ever been. With faithful, prayerful perseverance, let us run toward the grace of Jesus and the imperishable crown of glory He has set before us.

Andre Hastick is executive secretary of the Chesapeake Conference.

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