How well do you suffer hardship? Are you a good soldier in enduring difficulty? In these last days, difficult times are upon us. We are tempted to love pleasure rather than God. We are tempted to give in to our desires calling it godly, and refusing to identify with the Person and work of Christ Jesus.
The Information Age has enabled us to get all our questions answered rapidly, find quick solutions to our most complex problems, and complete tasks in record time. What endurance is needed? We have everything we need at our fingertips. There’s no need to suffer. A remedy can be found quickly by Google. There’s an all-natural remedy or a pill for your problem. We, especially in the American culture, are not cut out for much hardship.
As Christians we are called to endure. We are mandated to keep holding on to the end. We are told hardship is part of being a follower of Christ. Is there help for us in these last days with so many temptations to avoid? Can we persist in enduring while there are so many opportunities to seek (and find) the easy way out?
Jesus shares in Luke 21 seven strategies that will help us navigate these last days and endure to the end.
Strategy One: Do Not Be Misled
- Be careful of people who have easy solutions. We are called to deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow. (Matthew 16:24-26)
- Avoid people who say they are wise but are godless. Do not walk in the way with them. (Psalm 1, Romans 1:22)
Strategy Two: Do Not Be Terrified
- Choose to be calm, cool, and collected. Show yourself to be approved by God. (Hebrews 11:1-2, 39)
- Set Christ as your security in your heart and refuse to have irrational behavior but always be ready to give an answer to anyone who asks of the hope you have despite the dangerous situation you find yourself. (1 Peter 3:15)
Strategy Three: Do Not Defend Yourself
- Allow yourself to be attacked. Even though evil surrounds you, don’t put up defense. Know God is with you and give room for Him to fight for you. (Psalm 23:4, Romans 12:19)
- Let your only defense be your stand, the armor of God, and prayer. (Ephesians 6:10-18)
Strategy Four: Listen For God’s Instruction
- Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that comes out of the mouth of God. Be sure to have a regular intake of Bible reading, study, and meditation. (Matthew 4:4, Colossians 3:16; 2 Timothy 3:16)
- Set yourself always in the hearing of God’s Word for it will make you wiser and stronger than all your enemies. (Psalm 105:24, Psalm 119:98)
Strategy Five: Do Not Depend on Family or Friends
- When Jesus healed the man born blind, his parents deserted him and would not defend him. (John 9:21)
- Jesus is the only one we can depend on to stand with us. (2 Timothy 4:16)
Strategy Six: Do Not Expect to be Loved by Men
- Expect rather to be killed all the day, knowing you are more than victorious because of Him who loved you and gave Himself for you. (Romans 8:37)
- Know you must endure harsh treatment because you identify as a follower of Jesus. (John 15:21)
Strategy Seven: Flee the Wrath Coming
- Separation took place in the book of Joshua when Aiken sinned. The people who were being saved got away from those that would be judged because of their sin. Come out from among sinners and be separate. (Joshua 7, 2 Corinthians 6:17)
- Come to the Lord and make good sense with Him. Though your sins are as scarlet, He will make them white as snow. Then you’ll flee His wrath and shine while reflecting His purity. (Isaiah 1:18, Philippians 2:15)
These seven strategies will take you to the finish line. Implement them today and you will endure to the end. Do not delay, begin today operating in these Jesus-given strategies.
Written By: Anne Gurley