We’ve all heard about the sin of sloth. Why is sloth a sin? It’s a sin, I think, because in order to be saved, we do have to work. That doesn’t mean that we can earn salvation or that we can save ourselves. However, if God does 99 percent of what is necessary for our salvation, He still demands that we do the remaining one percent. And that one percent is not easy. It may at times seem impossible, and that is why we have to be persistent.
God is God and we are nothing in comparison. Therefore, He acts when He decides to act in the way He decides to act. Too many people pray a few times and, when nothing seems to happen, they conclude that God doesn’t care. If we pray persistently for something good, especially something necessary for our salvation, and we genuinely desire it, and we do our part to make it happen, I believe that God will act. It may take years, it may take decades, but I believe He will act. And, when He does, it will blow us away!
We’ve all heard the saying, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” That is very good advice, but I would qualify it. First of all, too many people try the same approach over and over. If the approach hasn’t worked the last six times, why wouldn’t we try a new approach? Look at what other people are doing. Do some research. Stop and analyze the situation. Then get back in there and try again.
We’ve also heard the story about the “little engine that could.” The engine kept telling himself, “I think I can. I think I can.” Positive self-talk is essential to success. You’ve got to believe in your innate potential. God made you to succeed and He doesn’t make junk.
Finally, you’ve got to apply what you learn. We all have to overcome our innate tendency to avoid whatever is hard, scary or painful. Expect setbacks, opposition and frustration, but, ultimately, expect success. As you are struggling to succeed, it may seem that you are making no progress, but Rome wasn’t built in a day. Be patient and try to be aware of the little gains you are making.
Remember that Jesus said that the road is broad and easy that leads to destruction, and the road is narrow and hard that leads to life. Choose the narrow and hard road and God will help you when you feel you can’t go on. At the end of your life, you’ll be glad you did!