Today’s verse says, “We work hard, toiling with our own hands. When people abuse and insult us, we respond with a blessing, and when severely persecuted, we endure it with patience” (1 Corinthians 4:12 TPT). Endure with patience is another way of saying bear with or persist. Previously, we looked at what it meant to respond with a blessing, and the challenge of that type of response. Though we know responding to a blessing is crazy difficult, enduring can also be a hard pill to swallow.
One reason it’s hard to have patience, to bite our tongues, to grit our teeth, to practice the pause with our mouths, to be gracious, etc., is because when we are in the midst of a cloudy day, we aren’t looking at the sun. We see what is right before us. We see the problem at hand. We see what has our attention. We spend so much time looking at our problem instead of looking at our God. Focusing the wrong way keeps us from enduring with patience. It causes us to wallow in our frustrating situations and see no way out. BUT, if we focus on God, it changes everything.
Focusing on God helps us to endure with patience. Focusing on God results in a confident hope. We know that God is Who He says He is and He will do what He says He will do. We trust in His promises. We can rest in knowing that there may be struggles today, but one day there will be no more struggles. Hebrews 12:2 says that Jesus endured the cross because of the joy that awaited Him. Remember, it’s the joy ahead that we’re looking toward. Having this mindset helps us to endure with patience.
Thank You Jesus for Your great sacrifice for our sins. Lord, thank You for making a way when there was none. Help to keep my eyes fixed on You, the Founder and Perfecter of our faith. To You alone be all honor and glory. Amen!