“...and let us run with patient endurance and steady and active persistence the appointed course of the race that is set before us …” Hebrews 12:1–2 (AMP)
Athletes will tell you that the key ingredient to running a 100m sprint is speed.
Not so with long distance running.
Instead, the key ingredient to running, finishing and even winning an ultra-marathon, long distance race, is endurance.
I looked up the word “endurance” and found, that among a host of things, it means to be “resilient, gutsy, to have staying power, to have heart vim, zip, intestinal fortitude and grit”.
Actually the word not only describes the capacity to bear up under difficult circumstances, but also to having a hopeful fortitude that actively resists weariness and defeat.
From the dawn of history there have been innumerable men and women, whose destinies should have been signed, sealed and delivered by defeat and discouragement.
Instead they confounded their critics, astonished their adversaries and staggered their friends and families, simply because of their unwavering tenacity and endurance.
I believe with all my heart that if we are going to do anything worthwhile in life, it will require an enduring spirit, a “firmness of character” and an “indomitable spirit”.
This is the “missing ingredient” that more often than not, will distinguish the “not so successful” from the “successful.”
As I have mentioned many a times, Jesus Christ gave His all on the Cross so that you and I could become everything He intended for us to be in this earth.
In John chapter 15, Jesus encourages His disciples to be “fruitful”. But did you notice that He doesn’t stop there.
He then urges them to continue through to “more fruit” until eventually manifesting “much fruit” in their lives. (John 15:2,5).
That to me sounds like someone who is inviting His disciples to victorious and successful living.
And that, my friend, is His desire for you and me.
Yes, it is true.
And the best part about it is that He wants to do that through your life by the power of His indwelling Holy Spirit!
Sadly, life is characterised by so many of God’s precious people who began well but somewhere along the road gave up.
I have the privilege of counselling many people who sometimes are on the verge of quitting and throwing in the proverbial towel.
But after a time of divinely inspired counselling, they will leave edified and encouraged to continue and to stay in the race.
Amazingly, it is those same people, who just a few days later experience their biggest breakthrough and miracle.
Unbeknown to them, they were on the verge of receiving their miracle and would have, sadly, missed it had they given up and quit.
Can you see how important it is to have tenacity and endurance?
Now I can hear some of you saying, “But you don’t know my situation?”
You are right, I may not know your particular situation and set of circumstances but what I do know is that at any given moment in time, we are all faced with different situations, different pressures, different commitments and different responsibilities, to mention just a few.
But remember they are all relative to where you are in this life and relative to your measure of faith.
That is why faith is so critical because it determines your spiritual performance in the race of life.
You are precisely where you are in this life, because of where your faith, or lack of faith, has taken you.
People of tenacity and endurance are inspired by words like
impossible, unthinkable, unbelievable, ridiculous, preposterous, incurable, insurmountable, unconquerable, outrageous and unimaginable.
And these kinds of people are not called successful or great because they never failed.
They are called great because they refused to quit!
And they refused to quit because they had the missing ingredient, called endurance.
Next week we will look at how we can fuel our endurance.
It’s going to be exciting and life-changing.
Have an awesome Jesus-filled, miracle week!
I am a believer and not a doubter and believe that, in Christ, I have everything I need to endure and to overcome in this life.