Endurance

How to Talk to Kids about Endurance

By Moira Gardener and Sarah Brouwer

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Boy I sure could use some of this about now. My ‘stick to it mind set has come unstuck. How does this happen? For me it`s rooted in discouragement. So I ask myself if my expectation is realistic. If no, how can I adjust accordingly? If yes, what is stopping me from pressing on? Why has my endurance taken a hike?

The Bible has *89 references about endurance, and encourages us “not to become tired of doing good. At the right time we will gather a crop if we don’t give up” (Galatians 6:9). Endurance is finishing the race, even when the going gets tough. In Wikipedia, endurance is “the ability to exert and remain active for long periods of time, as well as the ability to resist, withstand, recover from and have immunity to trauma, wounds or fatigue.”

After pondering this from a Christian point of view, I believe endurance is choosing to persevere in our faith and trust in God in order to rise above the situation, no matter what life throws at us.

Why not just take the easy way out and quit? After all isn’t there a time when enough is enough? We need to realize God sees the end result while we only see pieces. We can’t see the rewards until we look back after the race is finished. So faith and trust in God is crucial.  When we endure, we’ll gain stronger character qualities like patience, a confident ‘I can do’ attitude, and a closer relationship with God.

Endurance can also be for someone else’s sake, as an act of love. When I think of an enduring individual, I think of the movie “Iron Will”. The move is based on the true story of Will Stoneman who endures a gruelling dog sled race to save the family farm from financial ruin.

One of the greatest love stories about endurance is how Christ endured the crucifixion so we can live with God for eternity.

How can we endure? It begins with trusting and having faith in God’s love for us. He has our best interest at heart, and never leaves us. If we look at the apostle Paul, while in jail he rose above his circumstance by singing praises to the Lord. So, what are some tools we can use when we are in the thick of it?

  • Choose to persevere in our faith and trust in God
  • Believe He works all things for our good
  • Reflect on how far you have come, remembering He is always with us.
  • Choose an attitude of gratitude
  • Try to see things from Gods’ eternal perspective
  • Start with the end in mind and decide if the goal is worthy. If it is, write it down and post it somewhere you can see.
  • It helps when the goal is bigger than ourselves.
  • Think about how the end result will be beneficial to you and others

Some circumstances are difficult and others can be excruciatingly hard. And while we do not know the tough roads God has called others to walk, we do know God never gives us more than we can bear and He will provide the way out in His perfect timing. In the end, we will become eternal winners.

RECAP

WHAT:

Endurance is the ability to finish when the going gets tough.

WHEN:

Always.

WHERE:

Throughout our lives at work, play, home, everywhere.

WHO:

All of us.

WHY:

It is God’s building block to:

  • Strengthen character (Ex. patience, confidence … )
  • Bring Wisdom – to learn what to do for next time
  • Increase faith and trust in knowing God sees the end and knows where we are going even when we don’t
  • Build friendship with God as our best friend who is all loving, and yes, sometimes it’s a tough love.
  • To empower us to be a friend to others-walking alongside them while they go through a similar circumstance.

CHECK IT OUT

There are 89 references to Endurance in the bible at: http://www.openbible.info/topics/endurance

Here are few:

  • Romans 5:3-4 Endurance produces character…
  • James 1:2-4 Endurance builds strength of character
  • 1 Cor. 10:13 God never give us more than we can endure …
  • Romans 12:12 … be patient in tribulation …
  • Galatians 6:9 … don’t give up.