How do we have a perfect faith?
And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Peter 1:5-8 (KJV)
The ingredients are faith, virtue, knowledge, self-control, patience….
Patience. Whoa. Stop right there.
I am not the person to be writing on patience….but in 2 Peter 1:5-8, the word “patience” doesn’t mean having long-suffering….it means having faithfulness. It means being steadfast and consistent. Endurance. Diligence and fortitude. As mothers, I feel like we might be the most faithful people out there. We get up early everyday and do all of the things. We wash the clothes, dishes, floors, and kids. We keep them fed, and we hope happy. We do it everyday….and never get paid once.
But being faithful is hard work. And sometimes we are faithful, but what is GOD calling us to be faith with?
Those sort of look like the Fruits of the Spirit. So, ok. We are to be faithful in all of those? I’m going to be honest. Sometimes I can just get the basics done….I can read my Bible and pray, but adding to my faith knowledge and virtue and self-control seems a little too hard for me! Its like running a race I don’t feel prepared for. I’m just told to RUN! It turns out….I can’t do it on my own.
So how do we do it? Here are TWO ways we persevere when life is hard:
- The Power of Christ – 2 Peter 1:3 says: “According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness…” It isn’t supposed to be through our own power we find the strength to be faithful. The power of our Lord Jesus Christ and the knowledge of Him is the source. The more we know Christ, the more we find the strength to be faithful with the fruits of the spirit. So lean on God’s power today!
- The Promises of God-. 2 Peter 1:4 sys: “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises…” So what promises do we have to help us life faithful lives? The scripture is FULL of promises! He will never leave us. (Hebrews 13:5) We are freed from the power of sin. (Romans 6) The truth of God’s word will lead and guide us. (Psalm 25:5) Trust God’s promises today!
Through POWER and PROMISES we can PERSEVERE!
Remember, Peter’s audience in 2 Peter were the Christians who were facing extreme persecution. They were scattered abroad, and definitely feeling out of place. We will be faced with trials and temptations as well. It wasn’t unique to the first century church. Peter encourages his readers to be faithful, because we will ultimately be established in truth.
Therefore I intend always to remind you of these qualities, though you know them and are established in the truth that you have. 2 Peter 1:12
Established means to be settled, rested, and planted. Psalm 1 says those who delight in God’s law will be like a tree planted by the rivers, and fruit will come in the right season. It might seem you are in a season of darkness….PERSEVERE! Growth happens in the dark, but soon the sun will shine.
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