Whatever we love, whatever we fear and whatever we believe in determines the values that we establish in our lives. The way we deal with our affections, fears and beliefs determines our ability to advance in the strength of our convictions. As we develop the character of perseverance with respect to our affections, fears and beliefs, we will prevail in the many constant spiritual battles that we face.
Are we fighting the good or the bad fight? Are we advancing or have we already abandoned the race? Have we kept the faith or have we already abandoned our convictions? By answering these questions we can determine if we have persevered or given up; if we have overcome or if we have been overcome. The effectiveness of our prayer life vitally depends on these answers.
When Jesus faced his last minutes of life here on the earth, in prayer, looking into God’s eyes, he could say with absolute authority, “Father, everything that you gave me to do I have done! Everything that you expected me to be I have been! I have glorified you on the earth, having fulfilled the work that you gave me to do. It is finished!” Jesus only yielded His spirit after declaring that He had completed His mission. He refused to die before that.
Through his work on earth up to and including his work on the cross, Christ summarized and established the highest definition of prosperity and success through his declaration “It is finished”. There is no true prosperity without perseverance. Death is not the greatest evil that can befall a person. The greatest tragedy and worse situation in someone’s life is not death, but a life without purpose. The purpose of God is a reference point for perseverance. Without this reference point and without perseverance, our lives will be wasted. How frustrating it is to look at all the years some people have lived and perceive that they are living a life with no eternal significance.
A fundamental element of prayer is to persevere with integrity to fulfill God’s will, and to finish the work that has been entrusted to us without getting discouraged, responsibly fulfilling the conditions of the promises that were designated to us by the mouth of God. Each step of perseverance is a hymn of worship. We glorify God by persevering! This is one of the principle aspects of worship! We can keep the doors of heaven open overcoming accidents along the way and advance towards the prize of the heavenly calling.
In order to persevere there must be brokenness. The fatal blow against death was the conclusion through the last words of Jesus: it is finished! A perfect ending! Words such as these can only be spoken from the cross! Perseverance is for people who are being crucified. There was no place for surrender in the life of Jesus. Through His perseverance Jesus crucified death and subverted its kingdom by interceding for the entire human race!