The Call to Endure

            Jane Goodall refers to faith as the doctrinal aspects of religious belief, whereas hope is the trust that the doctrine is leading a person down a righteous path. Faith is foundational and is formed by the effort of building up a relationship (Hebrews 11:6). Hope is the result of prolonged trust in a relationship that is built up from mutual deeds of love. John 3:16 (ESV) says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” We express our trust and love for God by reciprocating to others the compassion and grace that He shows us (Matt. 25:31-46). Hebrews 12:1-3 explains that we will find everlasting endurance when we act on our faith and hope in God.

            Richard Davidson, a leading neuroscientist and founder of the Center for Healthy Minds at the University of Wisconsin, discovered that our brains have four major circuits that influence them to have a joyful state of mind. The four circuits are: resilience to adversity, outlook on adversity, ability to focus, and generosity[i]. God wants every child of His on Earth to have everlasting joy. He creates us with the ability to strengthen the joy inherent in ourselves and others (as shown above), as well as encourages us to do so in His word.

            God teaches us to remain strong during adversity as illustrated in the example of the apostle Paul. In Philippians 3:12-14, he explains that while on Earth we have yet to obtain the goal of reaching heaven. Therefore, we must not focus on the past and beat ourselves up for our mistakes, but push forward with Christ. Then in 2 Corinthians 7:2-7, the apostle expresses that God comforts us in times of distress by putting people in our lives  who will love and support us. James 1:2-18 points out that the way we view our trials in life will provide us with righteous strength because it means we are acting on our trust in God. The author of James wrote that we should, “count it all joy” because our trials will cause us to grow in our faith with Christ.

            Jesus Christ and the prophet Daniel helps us realize that when our focus remains on God we can accomplish great feats. Daniel was taken from his homeland to a foreign kingdom where He was eventually framed and cast into a lion’s den because of his faith. Yet, despite any fear he might have had, Daniel had the courage to turn to God and glorify Him. Therefore, Daniel influenced King Darius of Babylon to even recognize the Creator. Lastly, Jesus is the epitome of righteous generosity and love. Jesus demonstrated a life focused on God’s spiritual endurance. His intimate relationship with God granted Him the courage to face the ultimate trial on the cross. Their example has encouraged the hearts of countless generations to endure and grow in their faith. Will you use your God given gifts to endure the trials of this life with Him and uplift others to do the same?


[i] For more information on Richard Davidson’s research see his TedTalk on well-being and click here on the one of many related articles