Over the years, I have had the opportunity to help folks in the local community to remove snow from their driveways. The tractor that I used for this was a two-wheel drive monster with a blade on the back. It did a pretty good job, because it had fluid in the rear tires, about 1000 lbs. in each one and chains that weighed about 250 lbs. each.

After a huge storm in the late 80s, my cousin Abe and I tried to keep our neighbors’ driveways open. We would open up driveways each day only to have the wind drift them shut overnight. This went on for about a week. One of our elderly community members lived one and a half miles back in the mountains. By the time the wind settled and we were able to work on clearing her road, it had been about two weeks since the snow had started. There were drifts in that narrow driveway that were 3 to 4 feet deep. We knew that this job would take a day or more to complete.

The road extended up a hollow, and for the most part was fairly steep and narrow. The only chance to move this heavily packed snow, was to drive to her house and plow downhill. As we got started, it became evident that we would have to spin the tires to dig the snow out in order to gain traction. The tractor was all over that narrow road trying to move forward. Once we got on the steep part, there was no way to back up without possibly dropping over the bank. We pushed forward, hour after hour, sometimes moving forward only inches per minute. The one thing that resonated in our minds was the need to pray and persevere.

When we arrived at her home late in the day, she was extremely pleased to see us. She was even more excited about the fresh fruit that Abe had brought. We started moving snow that afternoon and returned the next day to finish the job. Perseverance and prayer were the key elements of the job.

Brothers and sisters, there will be times in our lives when we need to draw on that God-given inner strength and bathe the task ahead with prayer, and perseverance. The Word says we need to glory in our sufferings, appreciate the tests of faith, thank God, and be joyful in all things.

“Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.” Romans 5:3-4

You may not be called to plow snow for a widow in your community, but each of us in our Christian walk will be challenged in areas of service where we will need to persevere. Without perseverance we won’t have the proper foundation to build our character for our future life here and in heaven.

Also, you may want to read-James 1:3-4

Grover Duling, CBC Executive Board