There is no situation where god isnt moving things towards good.
If we believed this. It would shift how we live.
But goodness is not enough. We add to goodness, knowledge. Feelings shift and run out pretty fast. Our perspective of goodness is what we supplement with knowledge. But with knowledge comes responsibility and responsibility comes power. So we need self control. We can harness it to move us forward in life towards what we were created for. Anyone can be self controlled for a moment. But eventually controlling yourself will become difficult. This is where perseverance comes in. Self control is doing the right thing over and over and over again. Perseverance is doing that even when you don’t feel like it. It allows you to weather the storm and come out on the other side of it.
You can’t persevere until you control yourself. And you can’t control yourself without knowledge. And you can’t have knowledge unless you know the basis of goodness.
After perseverance, we add Godliness.
This is the act of becoming like God. It’s taking on his character and way of being and putting that into our lives so we are god-like. Not to become God, but rather so that our lives are to be shifted and molded so that we are looking more and more like the God that created us.
How do we do this though?
You have to know the thoughts of God. You have to know how he thinks, acts and moves.
1 Corinthians 2:10-11
these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.
- This seems like a losing proposition. In order to become more like Him, we have to know his thoughts. But no one can know his thoughts except the Spirit of God. How do you resolve this?
Oftentimes we fill in the gaps. We believe we know a lot about Him. That we have knowledge. And that the knowing will be the thing that causes us to be more like Him.
God is not interested in you memorizing facts about Him. Knowledge without being lived out is useless.
We have a knowledge of who God is and we assume that it’s enough. The scriptures says we all have sinned or fallen short. There’s also no one is righteous. Knowledge is worthless if our souls are corrupted.
So how do we live this out?
1 Corinthians 2:11-16
For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words. The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit. The person with the Spirit makes judgments about all things, but such a person is not subject to merely human judgments, for, “Who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.
We have actually been given the mind of Christ the moment you connect to Jesus.
The corruptible nature is removed from our system and transplanted into us. That is the all knowing powerful Spirit of Christ.
- Whats the difference between playing God and being god-like? What experiences in your life would you say are in playing God and what are in being god-like?
So why add godliness to our perseverance?
Up until now, these supplements we can do on our own. We can be disconnected from God and believe that things are good. For instance, knowledge of God is available without a relationship with God. You can memorize things about God and still be disconnected. And there are people who self control better than followers of Christ. And there are incredible people who persevered without Jesus. But now, It’s outside of our human capabilities. This we cannot provide for ourselves. We need an outside source.
It’s noble to persevere but it’s not what we are up to. If you don’t have a vision, then there’s no need for putting yourself through it. There are times in life where you must persevere. Where you don’t have a choice. Where the grief is about to strangle you. It’s where persevere comes in. Its when you gone through an extreme brokenness and you must persevere. The choice is to take yourself out of the game or persevere?
Perseverence is designed to shape up. To transform us in some way.
Think about all the times you’ve changed. They’ve almost always come from the perseverance of something.
- Where in your life have you had to persevere through something.
- In those times, what times are persevering with a vision and what times are persevering without?
- What differences have you noticed about each?
How you persevere determines the person you become on the other side.
And you were designed to be God like… To be shaped to be more and more like the God who created you.
Some of you have been wasting your perseverance.
Some of you have stopped perseverance and just enduring the storm.
You are not chipping off all the things that need to be chipped off.
You have wounds but no growth.
Stop wasting the perseverence. Stop wasting all the energy of going through it and persevere with godliness so you can be who you were meant to be at the other side.
“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.
When you go through the storm your insides are revealed. And sometimes you don’t like what you see.
When you get in the storm all of your goodness and religious rituals won’t save you. It is only the Godliness
God is not after your performance.
Not the right rituals or religious thing.
It’s only the Godliness that is gained through perseverance. When you find yourself in the middle of a storm the enemy will use your greatest gift against you. And move you towards an ungodly position. But when you look to a savior outside of yourself and cry I need Godliness to be downloaded into me… that’s when you find yourself in a space of compassion and understanding.
It’s how you come out more caring and loving.
What preserverance does in the friction is it removes and reveals.
- What are you persevering through right now?
- What is God trying to reveal to you about yourself?
- Pray with your group about what’s being revealed to you.