In Galatians 6:9-10, the Apostle Paul urges the Christians gathered at Galatia:
“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.”
These very powerful words not only apply to those stalwart saints who lived so many years ago. They apply to us today, right here, where we live.
The truth is, it is very easy to become weary in doing good. Anyone who has ever taught a Sunday School class for a year, or led a youth group for a school term, or helped prepare food for a significant church event—or countless other activities within the framework of church life—knows how very weary one can become.
The list of thankless jobs within the church stretches out almost beyond one’s ability to comprehend. The work of Jesus Christ, through the body of believers in the church, can only reach the highest level of effectiveness when literally scores of individuals willingly give their time and talent.
It takes many, many people volunteering to help to make things happen in a church. Sometimes, for a whole variety of reasons, the same people find themselves engaged in many church activities. As these folks look over their schedules for a given week, they find that they will make numerous trips to church in order to see to this matter or that one.
After a while, even the most dedicated volunteers begin to notice that, in many cases, the same faces appear in the ranks of the workers. They hear a number that counts the number of members who belong to their church and begin to ask themselves where all those other folks have gone when the call to tackle a new task goes out.
Then, do you know what happens next? Satan sticks his nose into the matter and begins to remind those hard-working volunteers of all the time they have invested while others seem to sit on the sidelines. The evil one cajoles and commiserates about fairness and just treatment.
Soon, each dedicated volunteer begins to put his or her foot down. When someone asks him or her to take on another task at church, he or she becomes irritated, even offended.
At this point, the tongues of the gossips begin to wag about the formerly dedicated volunteer. They use words like “burn out” and “worn out.”
All across this nation, even around the world, the army of God has many individuals who once gave their all in the cause of Christ, only now to step back and stubbornly refuse to take part. So, what do we do about this constant problem within our own Church.
We need to take another lesson from the Apostle Paul, this time from 1 Thessalonians 5:11:
“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”
Aha! We need to encourage one another.
When was the last time that you spoke a word of encouragement to one of your fellow believers? Have you thanked someone you observe at church who is fulfilling a role that helps advance the Kingdom of God?
Let me respectfully suggest that you make an effort this week to speak a word of encouragement to one of your fellow believers. Tell that one you appreciate what he or she does. Acknowledge that you understand he or she has made a sacrifice to do whatever it is that he or she does for the Kingdom.
And, while you’re at it, take a look at your own life. Are you looking for ways in which God can use your talents and abilities in His work through the church?
One day, when I was a small boy, a visiting pastor preached a sermon about service to Christ and His Kingdom. He concluded his sermon by reciting a little poem that has stuck in my mind for over 50 years. Here’s the first stanza:
Two little lines I heard one day,
Traveling along life's busy way;
Bringing conviction to my heart,
And from my mind would not depart;
Only one life, 'twill soon be past,
Only what's done for Christ will last.
Will you take up this challenge? Today? The work of God in the place where you live, through your church, depends on you, on your dedication, on your commitment.
Copyright © 2009 by Dean K. Wilson. All Rights Reserved.