Seated in a folding metal chair for the Teen’s Bible Lesson, I looked around at my fellow campers. All had their Bibles opened and their eyes fixed on the Pastor. Some even had notebooks where they were jotting little notes from the message we were hearing. I scanned the faces of my friends, noticing their interest in the lesson. Then my eyes fell on the girl at the other end of our semi-circle.
I had met her last year at this same camp. Even though she was a few years younger than myself, we had become good friends through email correspondence in the past year. I had even shared with her about Hearts for Purity, and she and her mother had come to our conference back in April. (Now it was August.)
I watched her taking notes, intent on learning from God’s Word. She was one of my greatest encouragements in all of Hearts for Purity. She seemed to be one of the few girls that actually cared about the ministry and what we stand for other than at conference time. Her eagerness to learn and grow and “follow me as I follow Christ”(to quote Scripture) was refreshing and a blessing. But at the same time I was struggling.
“Lord, she’s active in Hearts for Purity, but so often it seems that she is the only one that has embraced You because of this ministry. I know other girls and their moms love Hearts for Purity and want to be involved in it, but I just get to feeling that they only care during conference season. Why am I doing this if she’s the only one who is really reached by this ministry?”
And the Lord replied, “That one would not have come had you not been faithful to God. If she is the only one, then that is one more that came to understand Me better, than would have come had you not started this ministry.”
I almost cried. God was right (isn’t He always? 🙂 ) All those that He wanted reached would be reached by this ministry. If it was only one, then great! If it would be one hundred and one, then great! I was so busy being discontent with the ones I did not have, that I wasn’t being content with the one I did have!
(And just for the record, I know perfectly well that there are many girls and moms that are enthusiastic about Hearts for Purity. The problem was entirely with myself and my own heart–my discontentment with the enthusiastic response to this ministry.)
If God has given you a ministry, be content with His timing. He wants to flourish it in His time and His way. You can’t control the hearts of people; that’s what God does. You are simply the tool in the hands of the Master Craftsman.
So shall My Word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. ~Isaiah 55:11
Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we do not lose heart. ~2 Corinthians 4:1
I can’t lose heart and neither should you. If God leads you to something, He’ll lead you through it as well.
God bless you as you press on in your ministry for our Lord!