Staying power or maintaining our faith, is the capacity for continuing to serve God without weakening. Too many people commit themselves to Christ only to lose their initial zeal, lose sight of the goal, or let the cares of the world interfere with their dedication to serving Him. One of the problems people have in our century is vision, not seeing things as they ought to. Our vision can become impaired. Here are some things that cause people to stop seeing, to stop serving the Lord as they have in the past:
A fixation on what they can see with their eyes, on the things of this world. 2 Cor 4:16-18 talks about fixing our eyes on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary but what is unseen is eternal. People don’t see God’s nearness. Some can’t see His existence at all, others see it but not as being closely involved in their life. We must not question His existence based upon the presence of current miseries. Psalm 73:25, 26, 28.. besides you I desire nothing on earth.. God is my strength.... the nearness of God is my good. Phil. 4:5 - let your forbearing spirit be made know to all men, the Lord is near.
People fail to see the personal and real assault of the devil, or even believe he's as real as Jesus or God. He’s determined to destroy us. But he can be resisted, the temptations he throws at us can be overcome. James 4:7
The realization of life’s brevity. Life happens so quickly. We have to redeem the time, make the most of what time we are given. It seems the older you get the more you have to fight discouragement. Maybe it's due to not fully realizing how quickly your life has passed by and how much more you wish you had done. Maybe it's because you have lost focus and just now realize it. It's never too late to change your focus, to repent, to go back to what you know you should've been doing all along.
Sin’s emptiness. Hebrews 11:25 talks about the passing pleasures of sin. The latest study on alcohol consumption, a medical study, shows that even a moderate consumption of alcohol provides far greater risks than consuming none at all.
The soul’s value, not just my own but also the way I live and how it affects the souls of others.
Worships uplifting effect. Worship should be a mind enhancer, a vision fixer, a soul nourishment. We need to better see how greatly we depend upon those times we worship God together with one another and how much they can uplift our spirits.
Heaven’s treasure. We cannot even remotely fathom the wonders heaven will provide. Whatever our thoughts of heaven are, combine everyone’s grandest thoughts, it won’t begin to describe the reality of the experience.
What we are doing when we come together in worship each week is designed to give us clarity, to help us focus. In conclusion, two thoughts:
Soldiers of Christ arise, put your armor on, strong in the strength which a God supplies. Ephesians 4 tells us all about that armor.
The words of "I Can See Clearly Now", an oldie but goody song by Johnny Nash in 1972 are so appropriate. All the bad feelings have disappeared, here is the rainbow I have been wishing for, I can see clearly now.
Sometimes that rainbow won’t come in this life. We need staying power regardless of this life’s circumstances. We have a God who can help us through.