Christians, have you ever found yourself in a test or trial and you wonder “when will it end?” So many times in our lives, we have the opportunity to feel at the end of ourselves. We question if we can keep going day after day in our current situation. If you have ever wondered if you can keep going on, then you have found yourself in an endurance test from God. Let me tell you, that it is only an endurance test from God, if He has led you to do whatever it is you are enduring and you are actively believing and waiting on Him to fulfill whatever the promise or direction He has given. If you find yourself here, you might ask the question, “Why?”
Why must we endure? My pastor has been known to use the quote, “I cannot be defeated, and I will not quit.” This quote has gotten me through many difficult times of asking, “can I go on?” The part where I cannot be defeated comes from the Word of God. God confirms and edifies that if He says something it will come to pass, His Word will not return to Him void. When God speaks something out, it will come to pass, there is no question of IF, it is just a matter of WHEN. If we have the assurance of God doing His part, then we come to the point of the second part of the quote, “I will not quit.”
If God confirms He will do His part, then the only way that something God speaks out does not come to pass, is if “I QUIT!” God can do anything and everything He wants to outside of us humans. He created the world before any of us were here. He set the heavens and earth in their place. He created every animal. He controls all physical aspects of the world we know. He has, however, chosen to allow us to be a part of His will and purpose on the earth. He called and used us to carry out the great commission of “Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Mark 28:19-20 NLT)
God has called us to be a part of His will and purpose and that involves many different people, with many different lives, called to many different callings. Some will lead ministries, some will work with media/technology, some will be in the business field, some in the mission field, some stay at home parents, some custodians, mechanics, store clerks, and some elected government officials. We are all called to something and when God calls us to something, He then begins preparing us for that position. This is where the endurance testing begins. If God has called you to it, you can be guaranteed He will prepare you for it. It is in preparation for the position that you will face some of the most difficult testing. This is to teach us a few valuable lessons about how God operates.
God’s mercies are new each morning. His Word says that He gives us grace and mercy for each day. When we get overwhelmed, we are often thinking about the future or the past. If we think about how far we have come, or potentially how long we have to go, it can be overwhelming. We are stepping out of His grace, because we only have the grace for today and today alone. If you start thinking about next week, next month, or next year, you are entering into a realm of imagining and extrapolating your current situation into your future. If you are still enduring a week or month from now, you will only get there ONE DAY AT A TIME, it is all you have the grace for to endure. When we get into the realm of living for today and today alone, we abide in His grace and mercy and we can be strong and confident that we make it through today. God will strengthen us for today and today alone. Imagine if you have a gas tank of faith and it is just enough to get you through the day. If you drive all over the past and future in your mind wasting your “faith gas” by the time the end of the day comes, you will feel worn out or exhausted, potentially even defeated and more likely than not, you may want to QUIT. However, if you stay in your lane, focus on today and TODAY ALONE, then you can endure anything and everything that God has for you on that day.
We often get tested on this. As we are younger Christians, it usually is with shorter and easier tests. You believe God for smaller things and then He builds on the faith you grew in that season for the next season. In James it says we should consider tests “opportunites for great joy.” But you can only consider it Joy if you know the next line of that verse, “For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.” Great, so this testing causes my endurance to grow, but why is that important? The last part of the verse clarifies that. “So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing. (James 1:2-4 NLT).
IF you let your endurance develop, you will be perfect and complete, why? Because you will embody the quote, “I cannot be defeated, and I will not quit!” There is nothing more terrifying to the devil and his kingdom of darkness than a Christian who understands that they cannot lose and has determined in their heart that they will not quit. It is perfect because that is how God has ordained it, it is His desire, it was the blueprint He gave us in Jesus. Jesus could not be defeated, and He would not quit. We are called to do even greater works than Him, but we must be perfected and complete, to walk out this type of life in faith.
In closing, I want to encourage anyone that has been waiting on God for anything. Maybe it is your calling related, maybe family related, maybe it is health related. If you have been standing on God’s promises, please know that they are like solid rock, they cannot be shaken, and if you haven’t seen what you are believing for, then you just need to wait and be patient for the promises coming to pass. As you wait, you strengthen your endurance muscle, every minute, of every day, of every hour, of every week, of every year you wait, you grow towards being perfect and complete. An overcomemer, that knows nothing can stop them and a resilience to never give up on God’s Word and promise. As Christians, we are guaranteed that in the end it all works out and that if it hasn’t worked out yet, it’s not the end!
Father God, I pray for those who need a reassurance of their promise and position in You. I pray that as they press in and wait on You, that a sense of peace would rise up in their soul God, giving them a renewed focus on Your direction You have given them in their life. I pray that they would bring to you any frustrations or feelings of being overwhelmed and wanting to quit or give up and that you would renew them with Your love. I pray that they would see how far You have brought them and bring to remembrance the situations they trusted You before and how You worked it out for them. I pray for strength and joy for the journey, that they would take the test one day at a time, and that in Your perfect timing, they would see the fulfillment of Your Word in Jesus name, Amen.
So shall My word be that goes forth out of My mouth: it shall not return to Me void [without producing any effect, useless], but it shall accomplish that which I please and purpose, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. (Isaiah 55:11 AMPC)
God is not a man, so He does not lie. He is not human, so He does not change His mind. Has He ever spoken and failed to act? Has He ever promised and not carried it through? (Numbers 23:19 NLT)
Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing. (James 1:2-4 NLT)
Let us not grow weary or become discouraged in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap, if we do not give in. (Galatians 6:9 AMP)
For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. (Philippians 4:13 NLT)