To strive means to make an earnest effort with deep heartfelt words and actions. Strive to get past frustrations.
Jesus said, “Strive to enter in at the strait gate …” (Luke 13:24). This gate is narrow, and many times it will contain difficulties and distresses. “A strait gate means a gate difficult to enter. … how hard it is for men and women to leave the world and the attractions it holds, and heartily and lovingly obey the commandments of God. The wide gate is easy to enter. Entrance through it does not call for the restrictions which are painful to the human heart. Self-denial and self-sacrifice are not seen in the broad way. There depraved appetite and natural inclinations find abundant room. There may be seen self-indulgence, pride, envy, evil surmisings, love of money, self-exaltation.” That I May Know Him, 304.
Strive to get past the frustrations of this world of pride, envy, jealousy, and similar faults.
“The belated traveler, hurrying to reach the city gate by the going down of the sun, could not turn aside for any attractions by the way. His whole mind was bent on the one purpose of entering the gate. The same intensity of purpose, said Jesus, is required in the Christian life. …
“The Christian life is a battle and a march. But the victory to be gained is not won by human power. The field of conflict is the domain of the heart. The battle which we have to fight—the greatest battle that was ever fought by man—is the surrender of self to the will of God, the yielding of the heart to the sovereignty of love. … The hereditary tendencies, the former habits, must be given up.” Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing, 141.
“Strive by prayer without ceasing. At all times, in all places, lift up your heart to God. Give Him no rest till you, like the psalmist, ‘awake with God’s likeness’ (Psalm 17:15) and are satisfied with it.
“Strive to enter in at the narrow gate. Strive, not only by this agony of soul, of conviction, of sorrow, of shame, of desire, of fear, of unceasing prayer.
“Strive, likewise, by putting in order all your conversation, your whole life, by walking with all your strength in all the ways of God—the way of innocence, of piety, and of mercy. Shun all the appearance of evil. Do all possible good to all people. Deny your own will in all things, and take up your cross daily.
“Be ready to cut off everything that would hinder, and to cast it from you. Be ready and willing to suffer the loss of possessions, of friends, of health—of all things on earth—so you may enter into the kingdom of heaven.” The Best of John Wesley on Prayer, 17, 2007 by Barbour Publishing, Inc. [Emphasis added.]
Strive today! Make that earnest effort today to walk with God. Soon it will be too late to strive. The invitation to walk with God will cease. Strive now!
Heavenly Father: Give me the courage right now to make that earnest effort to be in your kingdom, to strive with all of my heart and soul and to “press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:14). There is no future here. Through Jesus you have reserved in heaven my inheritance. Please keep me in the narrow way, out of the worldly stressors and in Thy presence where my peace may be found and my heavenly future secured. Amen.