A few months ago, I invited the audience to meditate on the topic of perseverance, and I was surprised by the impact this had on thousands of people who heard me.
So, I decided to share this month about the importance and great value of the virtue that Perseverance can have in our lives. How often have you decided with absolute determination to go after a goal or dream? And how many dreams and purposes have fallen short of that determination? A clear example is the crowds we see at gym clubs at the beginning of each year. Thousands of individuals with a strong resolution to start taking better care of their bodies, workout, eat properly, etc. However, as months go by, their determination lessens, and a vast majority stop doing what they had decided to do. Very few continue, and by persevering, they build a habit and lifestyle that ultimately benefits their health and wellbeing.
I have seen this very clearly in the marathons that I have run. Thousands of runners closely packed together at the start line. But along the way, some start losing courage. Since a Marathon is a 42-kilometer (about 26-mile) race, you can imagine how many get left behind and decide to stop running. Many indeed! However, it is gratifying to see that many runners PERSEVERE despite the sacrifice and pain. They can visualize themselves crossing the finish line, and this is what keeps them going!
In life, thousands of dreams are cut short due to a lack of perseverance. Yes, indeed, we will always find obstacles and reasons to quit. It is precisely then that our determination and willpower play a significant role. During the pandemic, thousands stopped pursuing a spiritual life. They cooled and fell into spiritual laziness that jeopardized their eternal salvation; by failing to persevere in this important area of their lives, they risked losing their most valuable possession, their souls.
Jesus, the Master, spoke clearly about the importance of perseverance many times and in many ways. The clearest explanation is in St. Matthew chapter 24 verse 13 “But the one who perseveres to the end will be saved”.
Another example is the Lord’s parable of the persistent widow who appears before a judge to ask for justice “Though I neither fear God nor regard man, yet because this widow bothers me, I will vindicate her, or she will wear me out by her continual coming.” And the Lord said, “Hear what the unrighteous judge says. And will not God vindicate his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will vindicate them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of man comes, will he find faith on earth?” (Luke 18:1-8)
Another example is the Lord’s parable of the persistent widow who appears before a judge to ask for justice “Though I neither fear God nor regard man, yet because this widow bothers me, I will vindicate her, or she will wear me out by her continual coming”. And the Lord said, “Hear what the unrighteous judge says. And will not God vindicate his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will vindicate them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of man comes, will he find faith on earth?” (Luke 18:1-8)
Here we see that He tells us to persist with courage, to persevere until the goal you set before yourself is achieved. How hopeful are the words of the Lord when He says to us, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and the one who seeks, finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. Which one of you would hand his son a stone when he asks for a loaf of bread, or a snake when he asks for a fish? If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good things to those who ask him”. (Matthew 7:7-11)
God promised the Patriarch Abraham that he would be the father of multitudes, even though his wife Sarah was barren and he was already 75 years old; it seemed impossible. Twenty-five years passed since God made that promise to Abraham, and nothing happened; years in which Abraham and Sara grew older. Nevertheless, Abraham persisted, believing in God’s promise to him. Thanks to this family’s perseverance and faith, the people of Israel were created, from which Emmanuel, God with us, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, was born.
Another magnificent example of perseverance in the Faith of St. Monica, the mother of St. Augustine. Saint Monica prayed for the conversion of her son, who was going down the wrong path. And they say that she prayed and persevered for twenty-five years for the conversion of her son, who became one of the Church’s Doctors and most glorious Saint.
I hope that you, dear reader, will not stop fighting the good battle of Faith but persevere so that, someday, as St. Paul told Timothy, you will reach the crown of Eternal Life “Fight the good fight of the faith; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses”. (1 Timothy 6:12)
I wholeheartedly thank the Sowers of Jesus with Mary for their perseverance in sowing by Faith the promises of the Lord, which He always honors. This is why we continue fighting the good battle of Salvation and take the Father’s presence to many souls that desperately need an encounter with the Love of God. We are in this together, and therefore, I invite you to take part and ask others to join you so that new hearts join me in ESNE’s awareness campaign Where your treasure is, there’s your heart beginning October 26th thru November 11th.
I pray for you so that our Blessed Mother of Guadalupe, the power of the Holy Spirit, and the Mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ protect you and your families. Amen