Do Not Give Up in Doing What Is Fine
“MAINTAIN your conduct fine among the nations,” exhorted the apostle Peter. (1 Peter 2:12) The Greek word translated “fine” refers to something that is “beautiful, noble, honorable, excellent.” In this day and age, it may seem hopelessly unrealistic to expect noble or honorable conduct from people in general. By and large, however, Jehovah’s people today have succeeded in following Peter’s exhortation. In fact, they are known the world over for their fine conduct.
This is particularly noteworthy when we consider the stresses and strains we face during these “critical times hard to deal with.” (2 Timothy 3:1) Trials are part of our daily life, and opposition to the Christian way of life is common. In addition, while some trials are short-lived, others persist without letup, even increasing in intensity. Nevertheless, the apostle Paul admonished: “Let us not give up in doing what is fine, for in due season we shall reap if we do not tire out.” (Galatians 6:9) Just how is it possible to do—and continue to do—what is fine in the face of heartrending trials and unrelenting hostilities?
Help in Doing What Is Fine
Being “noble, honorable, excellent” is clearly a state of the inner person, a quality of the heart. Therefore, maintaining fine conduct in the face of trials and hardships is, not a spur-of-the-moment reaction, but the result of daily following and practicing Bible principles in all aspects of life. What are some things that can help in this regard? Consider the following.
Cultivate the mental attitude of Christ. It takes humility to endure what may seem unjust. A person who thinks highly of himself is unlikely to tolerate mistreatment. Jesus, however, “humbled himself and became obedient as far as death.” (Philippians 2:5, 8) By imitating him, we will not ‘get tired or give out’ in our sacred service. (Hebrews 12:2, 3) Practice humble obedience by cooperating willingly with those taking the lead in your local congregation. (Hebrews 13:17) Learn to view others as “superior” to you, putting their interests ahead of your own.—Philippians 2:3, 4.
Remember that Jehovah loves you. We must be convinced that Jehovah “is and that he becomes the rewarder of those earnestly seeking him.” (Hebrews 11:6) He genuinely cares for us and wants us to get everlasting life. (1 Timothy 2:4; 1 Peter 5:7) Remembering that nothing can nullify God’s love for us will help us not to give up under trial.—Romans 8:38, 39.
Put full trust in Jehovah. Trust in Jehovah is essential, especially when trials seem to be unending or life threatening. We must have implicit trust that Jehovah will not allow any test ‘beyond what we can bear,’ that he will always “make the way out.” (1 Corinthians 10:13) Even the threat of death can be faced courageously when our trust is in Jehovah.—2 Corinthians 1:8, 9.
Persevere in prayer. Heartfelt prayer is vital. (Romans 12:12) Sincere prayer is one of the ways that we draw close to Jehovah. (James 4:8) Through personal experience, we learn that “no matter what it is that we ask . . . , he hears us.” (1 John 5:14) If Jehovah allows our trial to continue as a test of our integrity, we pray for his help to endure. (Luke 22:41-43) Prayer teaches us that we are never alone, that with Jehovah on our side, we will always come off victorious.—Romans 8:31, 37.
Fine Works—‘Cause for Praise and Honor’
From time to time, all Christians are “grieved by various trials.” Yet, we must “not give up in doing what is fine.” When under stress, draw strength from the knowledge that your faithfulness will ultimately be “a cause for praise and glory and honor.” (1 Peter 1:6, 7) Take full advantage of all spiritual provisions from Jehovah to build you up. When you need personal attention, go to those who serve as shepherds, teachers, and counselors in the Christian congregation. (Acts 20:28) Be regular in attending all congregation meetings, which ‘incite us to love and fine works.’ (Hebrews 10:24) A program of daily Bible reading and personal study will help keep you alert and spiritually strong; so will having a regular share in the Christian ministry.—Psalm 1:1-3; Matthew 24:14.
The more you taste of Jehovah’s love and care, the greater will be your desire to be “zealous for fine works.” (Titus 2:14) Remember, “he that has endured to the end is the one that will be saved.” (Matthew 24:13) Yes, be determined ‘not to give up in doing what is fine’!
[Blurb on page 29]
We must have implicit trust that Jehovah will not allow any test ‘beyond what we can bear,’ that he will always “make the way out”
[Pictures on page 30]
Keeping busy in theocratic activities can help prepare us to face trials