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Persistence Has Rewards

We’ve all been given a gift. For some, it might be athletic talent. For others, it’s academic smarts. Yet others might be great with their hands. But just because we have talent doesn’t mean we’re going to be great at something right away. Michael Jordan couldn’t dunk the first time he picked up a basketball, and Billy Graham’s first sermon probably wasn’t spectacular. Both of these men practiced a lot, and their persistence paid off. The same is true in our spiritual lives.

In Joshua, the Israelites were cultivating a gift — the towns allotted to them after reaching the promised land. The nation of Israel was a ragtag group of nomads that didn’t yet have a place to call home. Joshua dictates what part of the promised land each tribe will get, but there’s a catch: The Israelites will have to conquer the territories in their possession. It will take years of persistence, and they still won’t drive out all the people living there, but eventually they will become a great and powerful nation.

In Luke, Jesus reminds us of another type of persistence: prayer. In Luke 18:1-8, Jesus admonishes us to keep praying, even if it seems like God isn’t listening.

In both stories, the Bible reminds us that God rewards persistence, whether we’re developing a gift or on our knees in intercession. Is there something God’s called you to that you’re ready to give up on? A prayer that seems to far fetched to continue praying? Don’t quit! “For in due season we will reap, if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9 ESV).

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