Determination can be good or bad depending on your focus. It also lasts or fades depending on the approach we take to maintaining it. As Christians, our goal is to maintain a God-focused determination.
Let’s look at three individuals in scripture from whom we can learn a lot about a God-focused determination.
- Ezra’s determination teaches us that we must be hearers, doers and teachers of God’s Word. (Ezra 7:9-10)
- Daniel’s determination shows us that resisting the surrounding culture is not only possible but necessary. (Daniel 1:8)
- Paul’s determination illustrates the need for complete focus on the finish line. (1 Corinthians 9:26)
These men teach us a great deal about staying determined, and they set examples we can and should follow.
Through Ezra’s, Daniel’s and Paul’s examples, we see that staying determined is possible. In addition, the Bible clearly indicates where our determination should focus.
We are to be determined to…
- Obey God: Simply make up your mind to do it. (1 Samuel 7:3)
- Avoid sin: Know your convictions before you are tested. (Job 31:1)
- Stand firm: Stand in faith, and you will be protected. (Isaiah 7:9)
- Follow Christ: Let Him lead you in every area of life. (Mark 8:34-38)
How to Be Determined
How do we obtain and maintain an enduring God-focused determination? Let’s again look to Ezra, Daniel & Paul for answers.
- Ezra praised God for giving him favor. He also went to the Lord with concerns. (Ezra 7:27-28; Ezra 9)
- Daniel had a habit of prayer that he maintained even when facing death. (Daniel 6:10)
- Paul, who wrote much of the New Testament, often included prayers filled with thanksgiving, prayers for others, as well as prayer requests for his ministry. (See a list of Paul’s prayers on Scripture Zealot.)
Habits of prayer, praise and thanksgiving are keys to constant God-focused determination. Also, never forget that God promises to help us stay determined.
“For the Lord God helps Me, therefore, I am not disgraced; therefore, I have set my face like flint (a stone), and I know that I will not be ashamed.” (Isaiah 50:7)