Have you ever met a Christian who was so good, it was sickening? They always did the right things and never did anything wrong. And you didn't even want to be around them; you looked at them like they belonged in the zoo -- because they never did anything wrong. You appreciate the morality and the behavior, but they're not inspiring; they're intimidating.

And then you meet a different kind of Christian. This kind of Christian may be a little rough around the edges, but their confidence in God is so unbelievably deep, it's attractive. And it just draws you to them. They have faced adversity and come out on the other side believing. You find yourself awed, not by their obedience, not by their Bible knowledge; you are awed by the depth of their confidence in God.

Do you know why that's so moving to us? They've let perseverance finish its work.

In the letter of James in the New Testament, James writes, "Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, lacking in nothing" (James 1:4). A persevering faith is simply the ability to see current circumstances within a broader context.

When you're in the midst of adversity and the bottom has dropped out and you didn't deserve it, don't assume that God has abandoned you. Instead, assume that something good can and will come out of this -- because this is a test of your faith. God is up to something. He is building enduring faith in you. So let perseverance finish its work.

 

In the name of the One who can do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine,
Bruce Jones, Pastor and Co-Creator,
Imagine Church of the Carolinas

Preserving Faith

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