Persevere

Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. – (James 1:4, NIV)

If you let that patience work in you, the end result will be good. You will be mature and complete. You will be all that God wants you to be. – (James 1:4, ERV)

So let it grow, and don’t try to squirm out of your problems. For when your patience is finally in bloom, then you will be ready for anything, strong in character, full and complete. – (James 1:4, TLB)

This is such an important reminder when we are in a trying season, or are walking through a difficult situation. God uses all things to grow us and show us more of Himself, and the lessons we learn as we press on in Him, teach us of His unending faithfulness. Incredibly, when we get through the season or circumstance, we discover that we are closer to God and are better able to reflect His love and faithfulness to those around us. Character grows as we walk through struggles, not in the seasons of status quo. May we ever persevere with the Lord through challenging seasons, for He is faithful to use all things to grow us and make us more complete in Him.

No matter what comes,

Choose to persevere;

Not in our own strength,

But through Him who’s near.

Trust in His goodness,

On His strength, rely;

Keep moving forward,

His love is our “why”.

It’s easy to see,

From the other side;

How God got us through,

Our help from inside.

Always He’s near us,

With strength and His grace;

Our help and our hope,

Throughout all our days.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that as we persevere through all that comes our way, You grow us to more clearly reflect Your light to the world. Thank You that You are always faithful to be present as we navigate all things. Forgive us for the times that we want to sit down and quit instead of trusting You. Teach us to keep moving in the direction to which we are called, and show us how to trust You to be our strength and our help throughout every day. Lead us in Your love to bless, encourage, and strengthen those around us. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we trust You to walk beside us and strengthen us to persevere in all things and at all times. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Grabrick and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. – 1 Corinthians 13:7

Mercy Like Our Maker

But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.” – (Matthew 1:20, NIV) 

Now when Joseph had decided to act on his instincts, a messenger of the Lord came to him in a dream. Messenger of the Lord: Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to wed Mary and bring her into your home and family as your wife. She did not sneak off and sleep with someone else – rather, she conceived the baby she now carries through the miraculous wonder-working of the Holy Spirit. – (Matthew 1:20, VOICE) 

 

Much like Mary, Joseph found himself in a difficult situation. Normally, the law would lead Joseph to bring public disgrace and likely death upon Mary, yet even before the appearance of the angel of the Lord, he had determined to walk away quietly. However, his plans were transformed when a messenger of God appeared to him to announce the truth of what had happened to his fiancé. His faith held fast to what was spoken, and he willingly walked a likely trying road, as he moved forward with the plans to wed a woman whom few knew or understood the truth about her visible unexpected condition. Joseph chose to obey, and became the earthly father to the Son of God. Though our willing obedience will not lead to parenting the Prince of Peace, we never know the lasting impact our decision to do the things that the Lord asks of us may have. Our extension of mercy and grace when it is not deserved can be utilized by God to change hearts and transform communities. May we seek the Lord to be our strength and our guide, so that we may walk in His ways and love others as He intends us to love. 

 

When actions deserve, No Room for Them

Seeming punishment; 

We ought to ask God, 

What is His intent. 

For often what’s seen, 

Mere part of the whole; 

Wisdom is needed, 

To serve well, our role. 

God’s mercy and grace, 

Made the way for us; 

To love as He loves, 

Just like Lord Jesus. 

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for showing us the willing hearts of those before us who have extended mercy and grace, when it was seemingly undeserved. Thank You that what we see is not always the whole story. Forgive us for the times that we have not extended mercy and grace, and simply acted on what we observed. Teach us to slow down and seek You, so that we will know best how to love and honor You in all that we say and do. Show us how to love those around us in a way that extends mercy and grace, and seeks to listen and understand first. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we learn to love others as You first loved us. Amen.

 

© Shannon Elizabeth Grabrick and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

 

Answer me, Lord, out of the goodness of Your love; in Your great mercy turn to me. – Psalm 69:16