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Perseverance is a trait that can be cultivated, and the initial step to cultivating it is to eliminate two of its greatest enemies. These are:
1) A lifestyle of giving up. A little boy was promised an ice cream cone if he was good while accompanying his grandfather on some errands. The longer they were gone the more difficult the boy was finding it to be good. 'How much longer will it be?' he asked. 'Not too long,' replied the grandfather, 'we've just got one more stop.' 'I don't know if I can make it, Grandpa,' the little boy said. 'I can be good. I just can't be good enough long enough.' As children we can get away with that, but not as mature people, and certainly not if we expect to succeed in what God's called us to do.
2) A wrong belief that life should be easy. Paul told Timothy he must 'endure hardness, as a good soldier' (2 Timothy 2:3). Having the right expectations is half the battle. Clinical psychologist John C Norcross found the great characteristic that distinguishes those who reach their goals from those who don't; expectation! Both types of people experience the same amount of failure during the first month they strive for their goals. Members of the successful group don't expect to succeed right away; they view their failures as a reason to re-commit and re-focus on their goals with more determination. Norcross says, 'Those who were unsuccessful say a relapse is evidence they can't do it. They are the ones who have a wrong belief that life should be easy.' Bottom line: 'We count them blessed who endure' (James 5:11 NKJV).