The Power to Persevere
“And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.” Galatians 6:9 (NKJV)
On a recent snorkel, God blessed me with the chance to spot this large loggerhead sea turtle. I initially saw her when diving to the sea floor to pick up a seashell. As I reached for the shell, I glanced up and saw a portion of her carapace (back) and her hind flippers protruding from underneath a rock ledge. She was probably resting in preparation for a night of nesting activities. Unfortunately, my free dive roused her from her nap, and she decided to slowly move away to find another location to rest until nightfall. As she made her way from underneath the rock ledge, I noticed that this sea turtle looked a bit beat up. Both front flippers showed damaged from possible shark attacks. As she swam, she slowly bumped into the rocks in front of her which made me wonder if she had trouble seeing or was possibly blind. I also glimpsed something apparently hanging from her mouth, possibly indicating an injury to her jaw. This lady’s appearance demonstrated that she had seen some troubled times. Yet despite the disadvantages she appeared to have, she continues to search for food, avoid predators and lay her eggs. What an excellent demonstration of perseverance!
As I thought about the sea turtle, I realized that sometimes I feel exactly the way that she looked: beat up, scarred and just tired. In these moments, it takes everything I have to just to keep moving forward. It is also in these moments when we feel knocked down by life’s troubles that we really learn the meaning of perseverance. Do we really believe that we can do all things through the strength of Christ (Philippians 4:13)? Because that is what the Bible tells us. No matter what life (or the enemy) throws at us or the number of scars that we accumulate along the way, the Bible tells us that God’s strength is always greater and by His power we can persevere. What a wonderful picture of the God that we serve. He is not an observer or a spectator. If we choose to let Him, He becomes an active participant in our lives, helping us to honor Him and to make it past the finish line. What a compassionate God we serve!