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NIV is used unless otherwise noted.

Keep Practicing

Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall.
2 Peter 1:10

Sugar. Butter. A little water. These are the basic ingredients for making scrumptious English Toffee. I’ve been making toffee for about thirty five years. The recipe is simple, yet it doesn’t always work consistently. Sometimes, at the end of the cooking time, the butter begins to separate from the hardening sugar. Then when I pour it into my pan and lay chocolate over it to melt and spread, the chocolate doesn’t stick because of pooling butter. 

I did some research and discovered that the separation occurs when there is a sudden change in temperature and inconsistent stirring during the boiling process. I rechecked my recipe. It clearly states to stir constantly over medium heat until the correct temperature is reached. I thought about my experience and realized that I had disregarded the instructions to speed up the process. I had raised the burner setting without stirring constantly. I decided to practice and keep practicing what I’d learned from the candy-making experts. I followed the recipe instructions. To my delight, the finished product was perfect toffee! It took a couple extra minutes of patient stirring, at a steady stove setting, but the end result was worth it. 

It’s been said that 10,000 hours of practice are required to perfect a skill. The thought of that amount of practice overwhelms us and may prevent us from trying, but if we don’t keep on, success will elude us. The same is true in our spirits. 

God instructs us to keep practicing the qualities listed in the verses prior to 2 Peter 1:10, starting in verse 5…add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love.

Gracious heavenly Father, may we keep practicing Your instructions throughout this new year, so we may be fit for eternity with You. May we not grow weary and rush the process.

Karen Sims

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