Author: Nathan Kroon | Student Leader, Living Education – Charlotte, 2022-23
Estimated Reading Time: 5 min.
Mr. Julian Braddock began his forum with a question: “What is unique about the quality of tenacity?”
Tenacity is something that we see less and less of today. Our society focuses on the mindset of taking what they want, rather than thinking about what is best for themselves. In truth, working towards the things that we want should always come at the cost of some sort of convenience, but people fail to see it that way. For example, calling and texting may now come instantly to us, but the courtesy that used to come with messaging others is long gone. “Having conveniences doesn’t teach us how to have tenacity,” said Mr. Braddock. Why is tenacity an important trait to have in our lives?
The Problem of Laziness
When he used to work at a manufacturing plant, Mr. Braddock would notice that the people around him were given all the resources they needed to succeed in their work, but they did not want to do their job. Instead, they wanted to stand around for eight hours and get a check. If they did any work, they would always ask their superiors unnecessary questions, making them think for the workers instead of having them think for themselves. We see this mentality all over: “You help me so I don’t have to help myself.”
Tenacity is the quality of working hard, staying determined and persistent to do what you have set out to do. God asks us to do what the world sees as “hard” but is actually very simple. This is why He needs tenacious followers.
The Benefits of Dedication
Mr. Braddock said that, in grade school, he would usually do his schoolwork without asking himself why it was important to learn what he was being taught, leading to much of his early knowledge being pure memorization. In his junior year of high school, he took a class at his community college on electrical systems, and it changed his perception on schoolwork. He wanted to be the best in his class, and he worked hard for it—not because he had to, but because he wanted to. He explained that the best way to conjure tenacity is to be willing to be tenacious in the things that we want to do. Your goal can’t be something you are forced to do, but something you desire to do. If we don’t truly want to do something, then why waste time on it? When he finally found the field he wanted to work in, the work was all effort for him—not just memorization. His hard work paid off, and made for a satisfying work experience. If people don’t have tenacity, then they won’t really work for something they want. Frustration and anger will then build, and they’ll become lazy.
God desires His people to never give up living His way of life. The world will try to discourage and uproot us; will we keep going, no matter how tired and anxious we may become? Do we have the true desire to serve God?
Persisting in Righteousness
Mr. Braddock explained that though we need tenacity, it can lead to certain pitfalls if used incorrectly. We find an example of a tenacious Old Testament figure in Job. Though Job was being brought down by his friends, we can clearly see his deep, godly persistence in Job 27:2-6:
Job was persistent in righteousness, but for a while he was also persistent in self-righteousness, which Elihu would eventually condemn. We must be willing to be corrected, so that we are not persisting in unrighteous habits. Paul was willing to be corrected by Christ, and strove daily to make up for his persecution of the Church. We also should be searching the Scriptures daily, and figuring out where we can better apply God’s word.
God provides wonderful blessings for our faith. The way of the world does not lead to happiness or fulfillment. If we have friends in the world, how do they see us? Do they see us as different, or in line with them? We should want to be different. God wants people who show tenacity in His way. It’s easy to be lazy, but He wants us to work hard. Many proverbs show us the benefits of hard work. Looking to them, we can exercise tenacity within ourselves!
Nathan Kroon is a Student Leader at Living Education. He originally hails from Washington State, and is a 4th generation Christian. Currently, he works at Headquarters as a Media Associate. His hobbies include playing guitar, listening to music, drawing, and watching movies.