Over the years, I have found that focusing on five P’s has worked for me: Presence, Prayer, Preparation, Patience, and Perseverance.
The Five P’s to Life-Long Change
1. Get into God’s presence. Hebrews 11:16 (NIV) says, “He rewards those who earnestly seek him.” Whether your preference is listening to worship music, meditating, or reading the Bible, take the time to get into God’s presence. If you will feed your spirit when times are good, it will help you be strong when times are bad.
2. Pray for God’s strength and guidance. Mark 11:24 (NIV) promises, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” Keep the communication line with God open. Share with him your concerns and fears. Declare in prayer that you know how powerful he is and in whose hands you place your human efforts.
3. Prepare your heart for a positive outcome. The Bible states, “Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed.” (1 Peter 1:13 NIV) Visualize the desired outcome, then take action to prepare yourself in advance for his victory that is already at hand.
4. Be patient with yourself. Ecclesiastes 7:8 (NIV) teaches: “The end of a matter is better than its beginning, and patience is better than pride.” God’s work is accomplished in his good timing, and the good news is that the outcome won’t be one nanosecond late. God’s timing is perfect, so wait patiently for the end of the matter.
5. Persevere. Don’t give up! Remember that “Perseverance must finish its work.” (Jas 1:12 NIV) The outcome you desire could be days, hours, or only minutes away! Keep your eyes focused on the prize and never give up. In fact, as Winston Churchill once said, “Never, never, never give up.”
Change is definitely not easy, but it is essential to our spiritual growth as Christians, and it is quite doable if we learn to sit in God’s presence, pray, prepare ourselves, be patient with ourselves, and persevere.