As a Christian I am constantly tempted to quit. I want to walk away from it all and just have a “personal” relationship with Jesus. So many articles about what “Christians” think or do make me so sad and angry. Many people in my life who “go to church” are just mean. When I bump into them on Facebook or Twitter I am left aching in my heart and I want to walk away from all of it.
I know in my head that I can’t do that. Those feelings often times cause guilt and shame. And yet, they come again and again.
But then I have an interaction with someone from our faith community. Or I hear a story about someone stepping out and trusting God in a rich, new way. When that happens my heart is renewed and refilled. Each new story of someone I love and care about seeing God do something in their life rejuvenates me.
I think one of the neatest technological advancements is the app that allows people to encourage someone who is out on a run through Facebook (I think Nike put it out). As your run starts a post is created on Facebook and every like or comment is shared with the runner to give them encouragement to keep going.
Paul wrote to Timothy near the end of his life and shared with him these words.
I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. (2 Timothy 4:1-5)
My hunch is that Timothy went back to these words over and over and over again.
“Fulfill you ministry.”
Don’t stop! Keep going!