I think God puts kids (and adults) in our lives to test us sometimes. "How's your patience? Well, you'll find out tonight when this kid asks you at least 10 times where we're going and will there be snacks?" I'm trying to paint you a rough picture for a reason. It's really not that bad. In fact, I wouldn't be doing ministry if there weren't purpose behind what I'm doing, but there is. I'm serving God and I'm giving him my time and my resources so that maybe, just maybe, I'll help change a life. I may never see the results or a life changed, but I think that's okay. It's discouraging at times, but God didn't put me on this Earth so I could see all my results before I die or even see someone come to Christ. He put me here to help further his kingdom. Period.
So, why paint you a rough picture at the beginning? Because you need to know that your time and resources are God's and it won't be easy to give them up. If you're a professing Christian and you aren't giving your time/life to God, I'd be inclined to second guess you. Giving your time will not always be easy or convenient. It won't always be fun. It's definitely not glamorous. And like I said, it's rough sometimes. I'm not saying this to scare you. I'm saying this so you understand what you're being called to. God does not give you an option. It's a command. Serve (Matthew 20:26-28). Spread the Gospel (Matthew 28:19-20). But serving is tough which is why I think so many of us don't do it or we put in minimal effort because, let's be real, we aren't getting paid for it and I got more import stuff to do (like watch Netflix, just kidding, sort of...). Seriously, though, we don't serve most of the time because we don't want to and because we don't have time and because we don't see progress or results. Same with spreading the Gospel.
This is unacceptable as Christians and, trust me, I'm preaching to myself here too. Yes, I serve at the church and I teach classes at the GP where I get to share the Word after class each time, but I don't give 100%. Not at all. Sometimes, I play Bible roulette and that's the verse of the day for my fitness class (John 11:35. Nailed it.). I don't think this behavior is okay for me. God did not place me where he has so I can just go through life on cruise control. So, what am I doing? I'm wasting the resources God has given me. I've focused on the negatives (reference paragraph 1) and completely forgotten that there's a silver lining. And there is a silver lining. I may never physically see the "silver lining". I may never know why God places me in certain positions in life. But, that's not the point. I am to give 100% of my effort to further God's kingdom at all times. No excuses. No laziness.
So, I dare you. I dare you to give 100%. I dare you to stop focusing on the negatives happening around you and start seeing the silver lining. I dare you to serve even when you think you don't have time. I dare you to stop focusing on that one kid who pushes your buttons and start focusing on the fact that God placed you in that kids life for a reason. I dare you to serve for no other reason than because you are commanded to. Start acting. Start doing something! Anything! We are not called to be lazy or make excuses. We are called to serve and to spread the Gospel. I dare you.
And, these following weeks, I'll do the same. I'll stop seeing only the negative (like that kid or the fact that I don't see fruits of my labor). I'm terrible at only seeing the negative. You can ask my husband. He hears me complain a lot. But, from today on, my goal and my hope is that I stop seeing the negative--that I stop complaining. I dare myself to live the life I just dared you to live. So, let's go change the world, shall we?