On the seventh day they rose early at the dawning of the day and marched around the city in the same manner seven times.
Maybe you understand the importance of moving forward in spite of the obstacles in your life. But how do you do that? How do you develop the invaluable quality of persistence? If you want to be successful in your God-given goals, persistence is nonnegotiable.
To become a persistent person, you first need to appreciate the value of persistence. Persistence is not just some motivational self-help concept; it is illustrated throughout the Bible.
I think about the story of Joshua and the battle of Jericho. God said to Joshua and the people of Israel, in essence, “I am going to give you the land of Canaan–but you are going to have to fight for every square inch of it.” Some Christians have this idea that if God is in something, we do not have to exert any effort. No, if God calls you and me to do something, He wants us to partner with Him in that process. He gives us the dream, the determination, and the skill, but He expects us to work with Him.
For the Israelites, the only thing standing in the way of their goal was the city of Jericho with its great wall. So God said to Joshua, “You shall march around the city, all the men of war circling the city once. You shall do so for six days. . . . then on the seventh day you shall march around the city seven times, and the priests shall blow the trumpets. It shall be that when they make a long blast with the ram’s horn, and when you hear the sound of the trumpet, all the people shall shout with a great shout; and the wall of the city will fall down flat” (Joshua 6:3-5).
So for six days, the Israelites went out and marched around the wall and then went back to their camp. At the end of the sixth day, when Joshua assembled his men and said, “Tomorrow, God has said we are to march around the city seven times,” I imagine the men responded, “You have to be kidding. We have been marching around in the hot sun for six days with the people of Jericho looking down and laughing at us. And there is not one crack in that wall yet. You want us to do this again?” But the next day they went out and marched around the city six more times with no sign at all that God was at work. Had the Israelites stopped then, they would have missed God’s blessing. But because they continued moving forward in spite of the visible circumstances, on their seventh march on the seventh day, God brought the wall down.
That is just one illustration of persistence from God’s Word. In order to be persistent, you have to appreciate the value of persistence. Persistence is biblical.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “The Power of Persistence” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2009.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org.