September 1, 2008
One of my favorite Greek words is “hupomeneo.” It is a compound word literally meaning “to remain under”. When it gets translated in our English bibles this word may be rendered “to endure,” or “to bear up under,” or “to persevere.” In Romans chapters 5 and 15 it has the idea of bearing up under suffering. In II Timothy chapter two this word has the idea of enduring all things so others may obtain salvation. And in I Corinthians 13 we are told to bear all things -endure all things, because that is what love does!
Newt Gingrich gave an interesting definition for “perseverance”. He said that perseverance “is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did.”
Unfortunately, perseverance is in short supply in our culture. Our relationships are disposable. Our jobs are transferable. Our life styles are transient. Any more, very few things are done with persistence in mind. So I am writing today to encourage each of us to engage life this week with a kind of stubborn resolve.
Let’s look at our spouses and declare “I am here for the long haul. Thick or thin, fun or not, I am committed to you. I will persist in our marriage WITHOUT EXCEPTION”.
Let’s look at our children (especially those who are teenagers) and declare, “I will endure your orneriness, try to ignore your temporary obnoxiousness and promise you my unending, persistent love and support.”
Let’s look at our employers and promise them a deep commitment to the work at hand and a promise to do it with a good attitude.
Sometimes, it is the “hupomeneo” that helps us engage life with a healthy stubborn resolve, a commitment to persevere- regardless of the circumstances at hand.
Consider the aboriginal rainmakers of Australia. A researcher was trying to get a handle on why this one particular group had a perfect record. Every single time they were called on to perform their rituals and dancing, it rained. When they were asked how come they had such a perfect record they replied, ‘that is easy – we dance until it rains!” It wasn’t a matter of magic power, but powerful persistence. They persevered until the job was done. You can too!
Love “bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things. Love never fails” (I Cor. 13:7-8)
Warmest Regards in Christ,
Sherry L. Worel
Stoneybrooke Christian Schools