As we have walked through the book of Nehemiah, one thing is clear: Nehemiah and the people of God were persevering through much suffering. It has been an encouragement to see God’s people never giving up no matter what they face. It is a stark contrast to how some live their lives, feeling that God calls us to something great but giving up and walking away the moment it gets difficult. There are several reasons people walk away when things get difficult, but no matter the reason, there are four ways to persevere regardless of the circumstances.
1. Have Clear Expectations
Have you ever started working with something and quickly realized it was not what you thought it would be? When we start a task, especially one that God has called us to, it is important that we have clear expectations of what to expect. In order to make sure you understand what you are getting into, you can ask the following:
- Has God called me to this?
- What is the time commitment?
- Do I have this skill set?
- How will this affect my current ministry?
- Do those closest to me think this is wise?
When you ask these questions, it helps clarify what you will be doing so you can make a clear assessment. Always understand the task so you are ready to go when you say yes.
2. Stay in Prayer
Everything we do should be bathed in prayer. In the short 13 chapters of Nehemiah, he pauses to pray nine different times. When we constantly pray, we remind ourselves that while we cannot do things on our own, we have a God who has gone before us and called us to it. And when we understand that God is in it, we have no fear of failure. It should also encourage us to understand we are serving God, our main purpose.
3. Remember the Why
Why: an important question that we fail to ask far too often. When we understand the why it causes us to persevere no matter the circumstances when we believe in the why. As Christ followers, our why is preeminently to make much of Christ and glorify God. Don’t give up because you lose focus on the purpose. Stay focused and understand that God is at work.
4. Surround Yourself With Encouragers
When we walk through difficult times and need to persevere, it is also important that we have people around us to encourage us. One of the enemy’s greatest tools is to make you feel isolated. When those feelings come in like you are alone and no one can help you, it is important to make sure you have encouragers to speak the Word of God into your life. Never walk through life alone. Have people willing to encourage you and tell you hard truths when needed.