Patient Endurance

 As I sought the Lord for a word to share, Patient Endurance settled into my spirit. I was recently reading in the book of Colossians, one of my favorite books of the Bible and came across these verses that spoke greatly to me.
Colossians 1:11 – 13 NLT says “We also pray that you will be strengthened with all his glorious power so you will have all the endurance and patience you need. May you be filled with joy, always thanking the Father. He has enabled you to share in the inheritance that belongs to his people, who live in the light. For he has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of his dear Son, who purchased our freedom and forgave our sins.”
I find these words to be extremely encouraging and very good news. What struck me as I read this recently, in light of our COVID-19 stay at home order was needing or having endurance and patience during this time. I don’t know about you, but I could sure use to develop that quality/virtue/character trait in myself with all of the challenges we are facing at this time. Everyone is experiencing different levels of stress and anxiety through this event, but we who know Jesus have an advocate in the Holy Spirit of God. You see, it is with all his glorious power that God Himself empowers and enables us to obey the word He gives, and to develop those characteristics that we will need to bring glory to our God and His Name through all of our challenges and adversities we will face; because we will face challenges, adversity, sickness and suffering in this life. The Holy Spirit will work these things in us as we surrender to Him and let God have His way in us.
It appears as though many are suffering loneliness during this time. I know that there are times that we do not “feel” God’s presence, but His word assures us that He is with us and will not leave us. (Hebrews 13:5) If we set our hearts to seek Him, to worship Him, to pray, and to stay in the Word, He has promised to meet us and be with us. I am a hugger, and I admit I am missing so many people in my life and the hugs. Patient endurance will help me get through until I can hug again and God will not leave me, He is with me, and with you.
This virus has turned our life as we knew it upside down. We all know what we have experienced, lost, and miss during this event. The time in which we find ourselves certainly calls for patient endurance, because this may last a while. This can either discourage us, frustrate us, or we can look to God, Who has not been surprised by any of this. He is our Rock of Salvation, our Fortress, our Deliverer, our Redeemer, Healer, PEACE in the midst of chaos, wonderful Counselor, an ever present help in times of trouble. This is what we all have need of now and in the days to come.
I believe that God has allowed this and has purpose in it. He is not surprised by this and is calling to each one; are you listening? Do you hear the call of the Spirit of the living God? He is wooing us if we have ears to hear. Everything seems to have stopped or slowed down greatly….does this bother you to be unable to “stay busy” and ignore your own feelings and the still small voice you “hear” inside calling you? Are you taking the advice of the media and culture and filling your “down time” with binging movies, Television series, videos, games of all kinds? Do you have another option? Are you working at better communication within your home and family? Have you taken up a hobby or cultivated a new one? (There is nothing wrong with this).
Are you taking time to assess and reevaluate your life and how you have been living? Is there a better or a different way that we should live and spend our lives? Crisis such as what we have been experiencing tends to manifest our weakness and dysfunction that already exist. The stress can cause us to exhibit our “dark side” and fall into bad habits and sin. But there is a God, He is living, He is active in this world. It sure would be easier if He would just end this and then we would not be so inconvenienced, right? We could get back to our regular lives and have things to return to the way they were, right? What if some things will never be the same again? To whom shall we turn? What can we do?
As a believer, Hebrews 12:1-3 NKJV states “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.”
Our lives as we have known them have been brought to a halt and we have definitely experienced change in all kinds of ways. How have you been faring through this time? Have you come through without complaining? Has fear or anxiety tried to get the best of you, and have they? None of us have any idea how long we will be living under the current conditions or how this virus will affect us and our loved ones in the future. How have you been doing though? We all could cultivate and make patient endurance a worthy goal. I know that
God is with us through this. He has allowed this, so therefore, I believe that He has purpose in it for each one of us. How have you been spending your time?
There is no time like the present to seek after Him as you never have. Do you have more time to pray, and are you doing so? Are you filled with joy, thanking the Father, as the scripture states? Think upon all that He has done for us, and above all how much He loves us. When we have a healthy understanding of His great love for us, we can confidently trust in Him because we know that He is always working on our behalf for our good, see Romans 8:28.
Take some time and remember where God has brought you from and all that He has brought you through and accomplished within you. If there is an area that you need to repent of in your life, do it now. There is no better time, God is giving people opportunity to meet Him, call upon Him, get into the Word of God daily, it is your daily Bread, for Life. Keep your confidence in God! We cannot put our confidence in media, “experts”, and information that changes daily and is not always reliable, but our God knows. Jesus is Truth, His word is Truth, the Holy Spirit will lead us into all Truth. What comfort in troubled times.
“Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise:
‘For yet a little while,
And He who is coming will come and will not tarry.
Now the just shall live by faith; But if anyone draws back,
My soul has no pleasure in him.’
But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul.” Hebrews 10:35-39 NKJV
Are you preparing, getting ready? Patient endurance will serve us well. Jesus is coming!

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