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Do You Have What It Takes?

"Pressure reveals character, and how I base the character I want to display comes from my faith. That's why I study the Bible daily." – Manning Sumner.

Grit, perseverance, fortitude, discipline, and diligence are a few of the words that I have been rolling over in my mind a lot lately. I've been digging deeper into what it means to operate in these areas. I have imagined what having these characteristics look like under different situations and circumstances; good times and bad. One of the thing that stands out to me when it comes down to it is that it when confronted with them, you have to make a decision: Either you will choose to quit or to grow.

Perhaps you have been in this place before?

  • Maybe you have been confronted with a situation on your job that makes it tempting for you to entertain thoughts of quitting.

  • Or, you committed to working out, and after a few weeks in, the scale is stubbornly not budging, or maybe you've gained a pound.

  • Or you perhaps you've been working on a business idea for a while, and it seems like you're taking more L's than wins.

  • Or, you have been in dispute for a bit, and you feel like you're at your breaking point.

Whatever your situation may look like, you find yourself at that place of decision; to draw back or step up.

Character development is usually not a day at the spa.

Who we are in our fullness is often revealed through how we respond in tests, trials, and difficulty. It is also proven when we are met with the option to relax, kick back and get comfortable. In both scenarios, we get the opportunity to see what we are made of.

As I've been spending time diving into this area. Here are some of the questions that I've been asking:

  • Are you comfortable in a comfort zone, or are you continuing to learn and be stretched?

  • Does discomfort cause you to compromise your values, or do you keep them even when people or circumstances switch up?

  • Does the time required to develop patience cause you to throw off restraint instead, or do you trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your understanding?

  • Are you one who wants to take the easier way out, or do you have "stickability"?

  • Do you compromise when no one is watching, or are you faithful even when the eyes are off of you?

  • When things get hard, do you stop being consistent, or will you finish strong?

These are great questions for any of us who genuinely want to develop to reflect on.

My guess is that you are a person who wants to grow in all areas; mentally, spiritually, emotionally, physically, relationally, and financially. That is why you are reading this blog! Since I am aware that you are the individual who understands that life has its highs and its lows yet, you are also aiming to show up as the child of God that you are in every situation to the best of your ability. So, let's take a look at the definition of the words above:

  • Grit: courage and resolve; strength of character.

  • Persevere: To persist in or remain constant to a purpose, idea, or task in the face of obstacles or discouragement.

  • Fortitude: Strength of mind that allows one to endure pain or adversity with courage.

  • Discipline: Training expected to produce a specific character or pattern of behavior, especially training that produces moral or mental improvement:

  • Diligence: Earnest and persistent application to an undertaking; steady effort; assiduity.

Words like the above are not met with "gentleness" and "flower peddles." They reflect the need to push past perceived limits... often. They require a 365 scope of life's rapidly changing seasons to apply the wisdom. To me, they exemplify what it means when you draw for the strength of the Holy Spirit to do what you in your might can not do. They embody not giving up but instead always digging a little deeper.

What I believe is an essential key that needs to be developing within our character right now. This means applying them to our prayer lives, studying the Bible, hitting our fitness goals, showing up in our single season or our marriage, serving others, and more.

One of the chapters in scripture that entirely speaks to me about this is found in Hebrews 10:19-39. This section is an encouragement to keep going in what you have learned and the life of faith you have seen others uphold. It is an admonishment to keep being faithful, keep a clean conscience, continue to think of ways to encourage one another and give up doing things that are no longer beneficial. Let's look at Hebrews 10:36-39:

"You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. For,

"In just a little while, he who is coming will come and will not delay."

And, "But my righteous one will live by faith.

And I take no pleasure

in the one who shrinks back."

But we do not belong to those who shrink back and are destroyed, but to those who have faith and are saved."

So, if you are currently in a place of decision and met with the temptation to quit and drawback, let these verses inspire you to decide to rise and not to shrink back! See your potential by choosing to remain faithful even when the easier route presents itself. Make your resolve to develop in the "tough stuff," and let it show you what you're made of. Now is not the time to quit or allow the enemy to shift you out of position. Hold firm, hold fast, dig deep, and rise!

As it says in verse above, persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised! AMEN!

Until next time,

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