Pastor Jeremy Writebol has written an insightful post encouraging pastors and church members to say faithful to their churches and ministries. In his post, “In Praise of Faithful Endurance,” he begins by saying,
“I can do this all day.”
I love how Captain America says that with a bloodied lip and bruised cheek. And as he gets back up, dusts himself off, and pulls the straps of his shield tighter around his arm he jumps back into battle, never willing to give up.
The ethos behind this kind of endurance is rare among us today, especially in the church. Too often, many churches are like revolving doors: people come in, stay a while, find something that bothers them, and then move along to the next church.
I don’t say that to pass blame. There are many good reasons to leave one church and find another. Nor do I intend to say that this problem only exists among non-staff members. However, ministry does require resolve, and those who are in it for the long haul encourage others to faithfully endure.
Click on the link to read the rest of his thoughts.
His post reminded of two men that I served with. Dr. R. Kent Hughes, one of my mentors, was in pastoral ministry for over 40 years, 27 of those years at College Church in Wheaton, IL. I was on staff at College Church from 1986-89. Kent now teaches at Westminster Theological Seminary in Glenside, PA. During my time in Russia, I joined John & Naomi Musgrave in watching a live stream of Jerry Mitchell’s final sermon at Crossroads Bible Church in Bellevue, WA. Jerry retired after 38+ years at the church. I was on staff at Crossroads from 1990-2004.
I have now been a pastor for 33 years. Articles like the one I quoted and men like Kent and Jerry encourage me to keep going. As Writebol says in closing his post, “May we all be long-haul, faithful believers for the sake of the name of Jesus!”