2 Tim 3:16-17 “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.” God’s Word seems to be a pretty good place to start.
1 Chr 28:9 (David speaking to his son, Solomon) “And you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father and serve him with a whole heart and with a willing mind, for the Lord searches all hearts and understands every plan and thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will cast you off forever.” (Emphasis added.) The carrot always seems to have a stick behind it, but key part is in bold. Go to the Bible and go to the Lord in person (i.e. in prayer).
Lk 9:23 And he said to all, ‘If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.’ This verse impacts so many subjects and here it is again. Once we learn and we’ve gone to the Lord and we have that personal relationship, we must step out in trust and obey him. True enough: we are saved by grace; but we were also created to do good things (Eph 2:8-10). When we deny ourselves and take up his cross we are actively developing perseverance. Can you learn the piano by studying a book or speaking with the teacher? No, those are important steps and can’t be skipped, but they’re not enough to make you a pianist. You must practice. You will need the teacher’s help and you will need sheet music, but you absolutely must put your hands on the instrument and play in order to truly learn and be good enough to make pleasing music.
If you go back and review the definitions from question 4.1 you will see perseverance is developed over time through action. The action is guided and made possible by the Lord. Still, we are the performers. It is His stage, His audience, His “piano,” but we are the players. He will clap when we succeed, and lovingly correct us when we miss a note. As we get better we will be able to play beautifully for the most horrendous crowd and will not be distracted by the hecklers. Don’t worry because God is holding the cue cards for the audience. Just trust Him and go out there and play.
This post is an excerpt (Question 4.4) from my book Ask James one.