Matter of Faith: Even if You Can’t See the Results

20161113_JLRussellEven if You Can’t See the Results

By Rev. J. Loren Russell, BA, MDiv.

1 Corinthians 15:58 (NKJV)
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”

When Paul wrote this letter to the Corinthian Church, he was responding to some disturbing reports he had received about a lapse in their moral integrity as well as to resolve some doctrinal and practical problems that they were having in the church. More than anything else, he wanted to encourage them to be faithful to their commitment so that they would receive the reward promised when they first believed.

All too often, discouragement creates barriers to accomplishment. We can start working towards a goal but, when setbacks and obstacles come, the tendency is to retreat to what we know instead of proceeding in what we have learned. Someone once said, the road to success is paved with good intentions. But, I would add that those intentions become carcasses of those who gave up too soon.

Success is not in the results, it’s in the activity. If you are going to reach your objective, you have to keep on pressing even if you can’t see the results. It takes persistence. The key to persistence is commitment. If you have commitment you will be able to persevere. Where there is no commitment, failure is more likely. You see, when it comes to commitment, or steadfastness, as Paul writes in his letter, it does not matter how physically strong or financially successful you are. What really matters is how resilient you are! Will you bounce back if you have a set back? Will you get up after taking a fall? Persistence, commitment, steadfastness or any other synonym you use, is the key to success.

When Paul penned this chapter of this letter, he was addressing the issue of eternal life. His advice was to remain steadfast in faith, that their labor was not in vein. The results of their efforts may not have been visible. They may have suffered persecution. They may even have experienced the pain of recurring failure. If they just held on, remained steadfast, not quit, and waited on the Lord, they would soon realize that their situation was temporary. Isaiah wrote centuries before, “But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint (Isaiah 40:31 NKJV).

If you haven’t tried the faith Paul speaks of, let me encourage you to try it for yourself. It will give you the strength and the fortitude to remain steadfast, constant, faithful, dedicated and true! If the going gets rough, rest, but don’t quit. When you remain faithful and true to the teaching you were given when you first believed, the victory is already won, even if you can’t see the results: FOR WE WALK BY FAITH, NOT BY SIGHT!

Be Blessed!

Rev. J. Loren Russell is an associate minister at both Goodwill and The Greater Universal Baptist Churches in the Bronx, President/CEO of The JLR Company for Church Financial & Strategic Consulting, and hosts “Matters of Faith – The Radio Show” on Soul 1 Radio, Mondays 8:00 – 10:00 PM. Listen here or by phone at 626-226-1448. Be sure to friend “Matters of Faith” on Facebook, Twitter @jlorenr, and email us at

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