When you feel like giving up.
The church had been going for about a month and a half. Our attendance was fluctuating from about five to fifteen people.
One week we would have some visitors come and I would be excited about the growth. The next week the attendance would drop back down again to a handful.
It was a time that I was full of excitement and also totally unsure of myself. Excited at the prospect of growing a church. Yet insecure of my calling because the results that we were seeing were so small.
Never having started a church before, we weren’t sure what to expect. I somehow thought that people were going to pack the place out within the first few weeks.
When that didn’t happen, it wasn’t easy keeping myself motivated. I was encouraging my wife that things would change, yet I wasn’t even sure that I believed that myself.
We didn’t have a plan B. A fallback: something that if ministry didn’t work we would just go back to something else. We had quit our jobs prior to starting the church and had no income or support from anybody.
As the husband, knowing that I need to provide for my family, this was an extremely difficult time for me. I was questioning everything.
A minister friend of mine was visiting us. He preached our Sunday morning service, though I don’t remember everything that he said, I remember one thing about it. As he was preaching I remember an overwhelming feeling of peace that came over me. The peace and presence of God let me know that I was where I was meant me to be and doing what God had called me to do.
Did things get better after that? Not really. At least not looking at it from a natural standpoint.
We still had the same small amount of people. The financial situation still looked bleak. Just a couple weeks after that service we were told we couldn’t meet in that building anymore.
Everything inside me was screaming QUIT. I was failing.
Things didn’t get much better for quite a while.
But God had given us a grace during that time period. I had a peace in my heart that we were doing the right thing. That though the situation didn’t look the best, that this was just a season and we would grow out of it.
Zechariah 4:10 10 Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin…
Let me tell you, it wasn’t easy to apply this verse in those days. The Lord was rejoicing to see the work begin, but I definitely wasn’t.
How do you keep going, when everything in you feels like quitting?
Are you really called of God to do what you are doing? Whether it’s ministry, business, your career, or whatever you do- is that where God wants you?
The only way I was able to keep moving forward was the peace of knowing I was obeying God’s plan.
Did questions come into my mind to make me wonder if I was actually in God’s will? All the time. It seemed like every day a thought would cross my mind to make me feel unsure of God’s calling.
This is why it is so important to not just know in your head, but also in your heart that you’re doing the right thing. Your head will be screaming at you, telling you that you’re crazy, that you’re a failure. Yet your heart is at peace.
Romans 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
Your spirit and your mind often oppose each other. As a Christian, what separates us from the rest of the world is that we aren’t just led by our mind, will, and emotions. We are to be led by the Spirit of God.