“Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” -James 1:4
As a person who loves being surrounded by friends and family, it has definitely been hard to be away from them, especially with limited communication. I realized I have only been gone for 2 weeks, but I have been struggling with understanding God’s purpose for me here. I have been praying a lot for Him to reveal that to me as the time here goes by. In the meantime, perseverance is necessary.
Why persevere though? Why go through hard things if there is an easier option? God calls us to persevere through trials in the book of James. He says we should seek joy in the face of the hard times. But still, the why question remains. As we keep reading through James’ opening paragraph, he explains…”so that you may be mature and complete.” What doe that mean?
“Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.” -Ephesians 4:15
You see, in order to become part of the body of Christ, we must become mature. This process allows us to “grow up into him” and become part of His body of believers. This is why we must persevere.
Whatever we are persevering through, whether that is broken relationships, anxiety, being out of your comfort zone, or any other storms we face in this life, we are told these will bring maturity, so we may grow up in Christ. But, the experience also allows us to serve others as part of Christ’s body as well.
“So in Christ, we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” -Romans 12:5
We don’t persevere only for ourselves to grow in Christ, we also do it for our brothers and sisters, so they may also be served by our developing maturity. I love that God has called us to use what we have experienced so that we may serve our neighbor!
Sometimes, as we are amidst a season of perseverance, the process seems painfully slow. We are so used to immediate gratification, that when we are asked to wait for God to reveal how He will use our time of hardship, we get impatient. But we must always remember to have joy in our heart, knowing that God sees us maturing in Him, and He has a plan for you to serve someone else with what you have overcome 🙂
I still don’t know how God is going to use my time spent in Ghana. Whatever the answer is, I am confident that God will continue to provide as I persevere.
“As you know, we count blessed those who have persevered…The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.” -James 5:11,13