[COLUMN] On perseverance

IN my homily last Sunday (November 6), I spoke about courage. I said that courage is the ability to express one’s mind from the values, beliefs, and genuine intentions we hold in our hearts.

For this Sunday (November 13), I’d like to convey the need for perseverance. It’s what this Sunday’s Gospel wishes us to have through the words: “By your perseverance, you will secure your lives.”

How do we persevere?

First, undoubtedly, it is through a life of prayer. Prayer strengthens our spirits and encourages our hearts. It calms our minds and builds trust in God. And so, it’s essential to start and end the day with prayer, especially meditation and contemplation of God’s presence.

Second, it is by finding support from family members, friends, co-workers, fellow church members, counselors, mentors, clergy, and the like. We cannot face life’s challenges alone.

Writing on emotional literacy, Anita Anand, a life coach, sees the importance of other people’s support when speaking of resilience, which alludes to perseverance. She refers to the five common qualities of resilient people:

  1. Resilient people are resourceful problem-solvers.
  2. Resilient people seek help when they need it.
  3. Resilient people take ownership of their ability to take action to manage their feelings.
  4. Resilient people have access to social support.
  5. Resilient people are connected with other people.

Third, it is by having a hopeful, joyful, and positive disposition in life. Brene Brown states, “Joy, collected over time, fuels resilience—ensuring we’ll have reservoirs of emotional strength when hard things happen.”

This cheerful disposition requires the discipline to create a mental boundary from anything that depresses us. And so, we must cast out any unreal and magnified distressing thought. It also requires that we surround ourselves with people who can bring positive energy to us.

May God grant you all the gift of perseverance!

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The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of the Asian Journal, its management, editorial board and staff.

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Fr. Rodel “Odey” Balagtas is the pastor of Incarnation Church in Glendale, California.

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