As we follow Him and live for the Gospel, we turn away from a more ‘normal’ path of life. And so we can face difficulties and discouragements that might push us to despair.
There are times when a worker for Christ can be tempted to feel cut off from everything good and life-giving.
But the key is finding strength in God, and not in our circumstances. Then we can joyfully overcome whatever craziness is thrown our way and keep running forward into the good works prepared for us.
David did this when he faced an incredibly brutal situation:
“And David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because all the people were bitter in soul, each for his sons and daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God.” (1 Samuel 30:6)
And at other times a friend came alongside him to help direct him towards God’s strength:
“And Saul’s son Jonathan went to David at Horesh and helped him find strength in God.” (1 Samuel 23:16)
We need to be people who believe and take hold of that strength, so that we can walk with him wherever, whenever.
“that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being” (Ephesians 3:16)
These are the simple terms that the apostles used to describe what today we call “missions.” They were witnesses of Christ, messengers of Christ, servants and ambassadors of Christ. They were minister’s of God’s reconciliation in Christ.
The work, the salvation, and the church is his. He won’t give his glory to another.
The work of Christ: it’s a precious spiritual commodity that he gives out to us. We can’t package it, methodize it, or pay people to do it. We can’t reproduce it with human strength, resources, or ingenuity.
We can only get it from him, and we can only do it with him.
He is the vision, he is the fuel, and his glory is the result.
It’s simply, “the work of Christ.”
The challenge in this thing we call missions, is to remember that.
“He is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ. To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me.” (Colossians 1:28)