A man had a dream one night. In his dream he stood before the throne of God in heaven. The man crossed his arms on his chest and spoke to God.
"God," he said, "I feel like giving up. Sometimes being a Christian is just too hard, and I don't feel like doing it anymore. It gets discouraging, you know? Isn't there some way for me to just get a 'vacation' from being a Christian?"
God nodded his head. "I see," he said. "And while you're on this vacation, would you like me to still cause the sun to rise every morning? Would you like me to still place a song in the throat of every bird? Would you like me to keep your heart beating? Would you like me to open your eyes from sleep and give you another day of life?
"Would you like me to still listen to your prayers and soothe your hurts? Would you like me to still forgive your sins and keep your soul in the palm of my hand? Would you like me to still send the sun to bed at night and give you the moon and stars to decorate your night sky? Would you like me to close your eyes in sleep and fill your lungs with breath even while you sleep? Or are you suggesting that I go on vacation, too?"
The man swallowed hard before speaking. "Uh, you know," he answered God in his dream, "I... I... I've ch-changed my mind. I've decided I don't need a 'vacation' after all!"
Most of us feel like that man from time to time. We may be tired of doing our chores. Or tired of doing a certain job. Or tired of making right choices. We may even get tired sometimes of being Christians.
But at times like those, we need to remember that God commands us to persevere. We need to remind ourselves that God commands perseverance because God values perseverance. And we need to understand that God values perseverance because he perseveres for us, day after day, moment after moment.
That's why perseverance is right-because God perseveres. He promises never to fail us or forsake us. And because he will always keep going for us, we should learn to persevere in the things we do.
REFLECT: Do you think God has ever given up on you? Why or why not? Do you think God ever will give up on you? Why or why not? How does it make you feel to know that God perseveres for you? Are you glad? uninterested? grateful? sorry? sad? hopeful? something else?
ACT: On a sheet of paper, make a list of the things God does for you every day. (You can start with the things listed in the paragraphs above.) Place that list on your desk or bedside table to remind you of God's perseverance.
PRAY: "God, thank you for all the things you do for me every day. I know that you'll never give up on me. Please help me to learn to persevere like you."