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“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.” Hebrews 10:23

Hold on.

When I think of what it takes to hold on – to endure, to press on, to persevere – the word tenacious comes to mind.

Tenacity is defined by Merriam-Webster as: the quality or fact of being able to grip something firmly.

In spite of my easy-going, compliant nature, I have been known to be quite stubborn and tenacious (just ask my husband and parents). Do not let the calm exterior fool you. Deep down inside there is a stubborn streak that hangs on hard and long, gripping firmly to the conviction I hold in my heart. Sometimes that has worked for my good, and sometimes not. It is both a strength and a weakness. When I apply it in the right direction – when I hold on tight to the path that God has laid out for me – it serves me well. But when I cling to the “my way or the highway” on something as insignificant as where to place the throw pillows on the couch (yes, this is a real issue for me), one might suggest that this tenacious spirit is being channeled in the wrong direction.

Gripping firmly. Holding tightly. Tenacity.

If we are going to remain, stay, continue and fulfill God’s plan and purpose for our lives, there is no doubt in my mind we are going to need tenacity.

One of my favorite books of the Bible (one of many, actually) contains one of my favorite verses: “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.” Hebrews 10:23

This verse exhorts us to hold on steadily…resolutely. No matter what…hold on.

This past year, with all of the transitions – highs, lows, Covid-19 drama, uncertainty, worldwide instability, grief and disappointments – never has my proclivity towards tenaciousness been more necessary for holding on. Today, with the sun beating down and the air feeling right and sweet, I find myself coming out on the other side with joy…peace…gratitude…and a firm grip on all God’s faithfulness.

Covid-19 is still here and uncertainty and worldwide instability continue to abound, but…He never fails. And his faithfulness gives me peace. Clinging tenaciously to God – His Word, His truth – is the only way we can endure, persevere, and press on towards God’s promises.

If our faith is so weak that we cower and recoil when life gets messy and hard, ugly and painful, we will quickly lose our grip…we will not overcome. We really do need to shed the unnecessary and frivolous in order to give ourselves capacity to hold on. We also need to be willing to work those faith muscles and allow God to stretch us so that we can keep moving forward.

Jackson, my thirteen-year-old son, has a goal for this year. He wants to increase his muscle tone and strength. Through no fault of his own – we can blame it on genetics – Jackson is not naturally athletic. He is long, lean, and prefers building with Legos over building up his muscles. However, he made the decision that this is the year that he is going to “buff up”. While I am not a work-out aficionado, I do know one thing for sure: building strength and muscle takes time, commitment, and tenacity. Jackson will need all three of those characteristics in order to achieve his goal. Rather than hold on to an idea and a dream, he’s going to have to wrap his real hands around real weights, hold on tightly, and press on no matter how tired and uncomfortable his body may get. He’s going to need a lot of tenacity to achieve this goal.

Likewise, it takes a type of fearless tenacity to pursue obedience in the face of trial, disappointment, and adversity. It is not self-reliant fearlessness that says, “I can do all things through the strength I can muster up inside of me because I’m a strong and capable person.” This kind of fearlessness will eventually lead to exhaustion and defeat. The kind of fearlessness that carries us through every challenge and every wearying moment is the kind that says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13). It is completely and utterly dependent upon Christ working inside of us and through us.

It gives us the capacity to hold on. To cling and to stand our ground. Christ’s strength within us makes us tenacious and fearless. When the blitz from the enemy comes, we set our gaze heavenward and carry on.

“Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess…Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 14:4

If I could give one word of encouragement today – to anyone feeling the weight of struggle, doubt, weariness or uncertainty – it would be this: hold on tenaciously to hope, to the faith that we profess, to the One who gives us the grace we need at the exact moment we need it.

Hold on.

Remain faithful…he is faithful.

Stay steady…his hands will steady you.

Continue forward…he is leading the way.

Fulfill the purpose…his plans are good and trustworthy.

“He who promised is faithful.”

Hold on.

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