Have you or your child(ren) been feeling increasingly less energetic these days, as we navigate through this 3rd wave of lockdown? I recently came across this article that describes our sense of “blah” as languishing. The New York Times goes on to explain that the state of languishing is characterized by joylessness, aimlessness, stagnation, and emptiness. This is a common problem that many in our society are experiencing.
While naming the problem is a start, how do we go about changing this? Furthermore, how do we as Christians go about offering a different narrative to this problem that is plaguing so many? Today in chapel, we talked about a different word that is juxtaposed with the outcome of languishing: perseverance.
Throughout the Bible, we encounter many individuals who were placed in difficult situations and either experienced languish or were tempted to do so. While there are many verses that can encourage us on this topic, here are 3 that I have found helpful:
James 1:2-4 says, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” Verse 12 follows with, “Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.”
Romans 5:3-5 goes on to say, “More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”
These verses challenge us to find joy when facing difficulty, to be filled with His Holy Spirit, and to live purposefully for God with the end in sight. It is through these difficult periods that God refines our character and produces the necessary perseverance for us to accomplish His work. It is not easy, but it’s when we rely most on God that He equips us with His strength. As we set our sights on the end of the school year, be encouraged that God will give us all that we need to persevere and finish strong for His glory.