I am just the messenger. I am not the message. I speak only what the bible speaks and I won’t go beyond it. It is a road I find very few on but I travel on. I get discouraged. There are times I feel like walking away from the responsibilities that accompany a minister of the Gospel. There are times when I’ve been tempted to say, I quit! I give up! I can’t it take anymore!
However, I can’t help myself. I just keep treading water in an ocean of sin and despair. Like Jeremiah of old who voiced his frustration to the Lord when the people mocked his message, ignored his warnings, and discouraged him to the point that he was ready to quit preaching (Jer. 20:7-9), so it is with me. However, I can also identify with the prophets passion for perseverance and his love for the message of God when he revealed that every time he thought about quitting, . then in my heart it becomes like a burning fire shut up in my bones; and I am weary of holding it in, and I cannot endure it” (Jer 20:9)
I’ve preached to people for years who ought to obey the gospel but they don’t. Sometimes I question my ability, only to remember that the power is in the message, not the messenger (I Cor. 3:5-7).
People are quick to tell me that they don’t understand why I don’t agree with their denominational teaching. They are readily waiting to tell me that I speak foolishness. However, their proof is not in God’s Word, but is wrapped up in man’s opinions, lexicons and commentaries. To this I say, if God didn’t command you to do something, why do it! God doesn’t reward what he never commanded. However, God will punish all who go beyond that which is written (1 Cor 4:6). If you can’t prove your faith solely in the bible, then you are teaching the commandments of men (1 Thess 5:21 f; Mt 15:7-9).
Churches promote immorality by ignoring Gods instruction on marriage, divorce and remarriage (Mt 19:9 ff; Rom 7:2,3; 1 Cor 7). I see our nation cater to homosexuals and behavior that the Bible condemns in the strongest of terms (Lev. 20:13 f; Rom 1). Man may sanctify gay marriage, but God doesn’t and neither do I. America leads the way to the destruction by following the ways of Sodom and Gomorrah. This is disheartening, yet I fight the good fight of faith.
I suffer persecutions which stand in my way of doing more for the Lord. Yet, as long as the Lord gives me strength, I struggle along. Just as Paul said, “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong (1 Cor 12:9,10).
Sure, I get discouraged. Sure, I’m tempted to quit and walk away most every day, but I don’t for the reason Jeremiah didn’t. There are just some things worth fighting for, and standing above them all are the souls of men. Me? Quit? Yes, the day that I die!