Problems Produce Perseverance

The testing of your faith
develops perseverance.
          —James 1:3

Dara Torres was the first swimmer to represent the United States in five Olympic Games—an Olympic career spanning twenty-four years.

Dara became the world record-holder in three events and a 12-time Olympic medalist. When she retired, at age forty-one, she was the oldest U.S. Olympic swimmer in history.

Dara encountered many obstacles, including injuries and surgeries. “I’ve learned that setbacks have an upside,” she said—“they fuel new dreams.”

Setbacks also have an upside spiritually. “We rejoice in the hope of the glory of God,” wrote Paul—then added: “We also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope” (Rom 5:2–4).

We don’t want or welcome problems. Still, suffering teaches us things that success can’t. And, if we let it, deepens our dependence upon God.

Success doesn’t make you,
and problems can’t break you.

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