Ezra and Nehemiah are nothing if not relentless. Nobody's making it easy for them to rebuild the temple or institute rules for the community. The Samaritans and others keep butting in and shutting things down and turning the king against the Israelites. The people do absolutely awful things like marry foreign women and raise children who don't speak the language. They have to be constantly on guard while building, with no time for coffee breaks or bathing. The perseverance pays off, though. Nobody passes out from the hot and sweaty atmosphere, the temple gets built and dedicated, the city walls repaired, and the king approves and buys the supplies.
You could also say that the Jews in Babylon persevered during the exile, but to be honest, they lived pretty well there. The first generation of exiles missed home, but their descendants got used to living in prosperous Babylon. Not everyone came back to Judea or even wanted to. For them, the perseverance part was maintaining their religious identity during those generations until they returned home.
Questions About Perseverance
What are the obstacles placed in the way of the people?
Which character do you think demonstrates the most endurance, the most courage against obstacles?
Does the reconstruction of Israel demonstrate God's own perseverance as well as that of the people?
Are the largest obstacles external or internal to the community?