We so loved the wonderful artwork by Julie Rogers depicting the struggle of the Utah pioneers who were caught in an early storm as they attempted to go to the top of South Pass on their way to Salt Lake City in the 1850s. We felt their struggle was an example of extreme perseverance so we added the word to the wonderful painting. It should be noted that the painting is depicting an actual pair of pioneer women who made it after an extreme ordeal all the way to Salt Lake City in spite of the fact that one of the women became quite ill leaving just the other to push the handcart, even in the most difficult of situations. Real perseverance and the faith to weather the storm no matter what!
So, what does the bible tell us of the spiritual meaning of perseverance ? There is a very powerful verse in Revelation that provides a clear statement of the command to persevere.
Because you have kept my command to persevere, I will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth.
Many are the examples of God’s people who persevered as they made His way their way and did not allow circumstances yo get in the way of their love and obedience of God. Starting with Abraham’s willingness to obey God’s commandments, go where God sent him and to start all over in a new life. Many others including Moses who followed God’s wishes to persevere in spite of feelings that he was not the one to be chosen to lead the Israelites out of Egypt and on to the promised land.
IIf we move ahead to the history of the disciples following the death and resurrection of Jesus there are so many records of those brave and persevering men and women who had the faith to preach the gospel in spite of persecution even leading to their death by the most inhumane way. One only needs to read the letters of Paul to understand what it means to persevere under the most difficult of circumstances. As you know Paul suffered many beatings, floggings and sven stoning before his life ended in Rome by decapitaion.
So, how do we relate as believers to the trials of these days and thus the need for perseverance if we are going to keep our Christian beliefs in spite of a daily bombardment from those who wish to convince us to reject our beliefs and join in the ways of the world. It takes an ongoing reinforcement of our faith, perhaps by daily reading and study of the bible, seeking the guidance and wisdom that can be found so readily there. An additional verse may be helpful to keep us on the path with God in spite of the pressures of this world today.
Romans 5: 1-4 Therefore, having been justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Chris, through whom also we have access by faith into His grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that , but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance: and perseverance character, and character hope.