Believe and persevere are two words that are loaded with promise for the fruitful future. Without believing, you won’t think you can persevere. And without persevering, you won’t have the fruit of what you believe.
We all have beliefs. A belief is simply what you think to be true. I am not referring to your religious beliefs here. I am, rather, focusing on what you believe about yourself. Do you believe you are worthy?
One way to learn what you think to be true about yourself is to listen to your thoughts. Your thoughts speak more loudly than you might realize. Have you ever done this — listened to your thoughts? How you think tells you a great deal about your self-image. Do you hear: “I can’t do that!” or “Who do I think I am?” or “Why did I think I could do this?” I hope that you hear: “I can do this!” or “I am a capable person!” or “I am able to do this.”
Do you hear or recall words spoken to you in your past, perhaps by parents or an ex-spouse? If you heard “You are stupid!” or “You are worthless,” it is very difficult to turn them off, even years later. Numerous clients and other single moms have shared with me the put-downs they experienced from their mothers. I’ve seen the heartache and emotional pain this brought on. Children are highly impressionable.
Your belief about yourself should be true and realistic. Think about how you think.
As a grown woman, you may still “hear” the voices that left you thinking that you are not worthy. I encourage you to print and paste this “Christian Identity Confession” in a place where you will see it every morning. Read it aloud and let the truth sink in.
Albert Einstein illustrated perseverance when he said, “It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with the problem longer.”
In other words, don’t give up. That is perseverance. Perseverance is a refusal to quit. It is looking into the face of adversity and saying, “I like my odds.”
Adversity comes to almost everyone at some point in life. It may not have been easy to get to where you are today. It may have been an uphill battle. Some days you may feel like you are climbing Mt. Everest.
Eric Weihenmayer considers adversity an advantage, as he explains in the book, Adversity Advantage. The theme is “turning everyday struggles into everyday greatness.” Eric climbed all seven summits, the highest points on each of the seven continents. What makes it even more impressive is that Eric is totally blind!
Perseverance comes more naturally for some than others. If you want to develop perseverance, you may find it helpful to read Napoleon Hill’s list of what you need in his book, Think and Grow Rich, published in 1937:
You can develop your perseverance by having:
- A Definite Purpose – backed by burning desire for its fulfillment.
- A Definite Plan – expressed in continuous action.
- A Mind Closed Tightly – against negative and discouraging influence.
- A Friendly Alliance – with one or more persons who will encourage you to follow through with both the plan and the purpose.
If you believe in yourself and persevere, you will reap the rewards — eventually. Your trials and adversity are not your enemies.
“Adversity is one of the most potent forces in life. It shapes your character, clarifies your priorities, and defines your path. It can also fuel your greatness. Each of us faces a rich assortment of adversities every day, ranging from minor hassles to major setbacks, even tragedies. The path to success, both in business and in life, is learning how to convert any adversity into a genuine advantage.” –Eric Weihenmaver
James spoke to this when he said in James 1:2-4,
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”
What are you believing and persevering for today?