Ryle: Persevere and Press OnBy David Burnette
In his discussion of what it means to count the cost (Luke 14:28) of being a Christian, J.C. Ryle closes by exhorting those who have counted the cost to endure in faithfulness:
If any reader of this paper really feels that he has counted the cost, and taken up his cross, I bid him persevere and press on. I dare say you often feel your heart faint, and are sorely tempted to give up in despair. Your enemies seem so many, your besetting sins so strong, your friends so few, the way so steep and narrow, you hardly know what to do. But still, I say, persevere and press on.
The time is very short. A few more years of watching and praying, a few more tossings on the sea of this world, a few more deaths and changes, a few more winters and summers, and all will be over. We shall have fought our last battle, and shall need to fight no more.
The presence and company of Christ will make amends for all we suffer here below. When we see as we have been seen, and look back on the journey of life, we shall wonder at our own faintness of heart. We shall marvel that we made so much of our cross, and thought so little of our crown. We shall marvel that in “counting the cost” we could ever doubt on which side the balance of profit lay. Let us take courage. We are not far from home. IT MAY COST MUCH TO BE A TRUE CHRISTIAN AND A CONSISTENT BELIEVER; BUT IT PAYS.
Ryle, Faithfulness and Holiness: The Witness of J.C. Ryle, an Appreciation by J.I. Packer, 185.