Lately there is more and more slackness among the workers of the Gospel. When times were harder, when they were persecuted, there was shown more passion when preaching the salvation. This morning, a friend priest told me that even when the priests gathered before making a spiritual ministry, their main talks were about materials needs that they were facing. It seems that a fatigue caught those involved in the Gospel ministry. Let’s see in chapter 4 of the Second Epistle to the Corinthians what to do not to lose heart, if you were called by Christ to work in his field
Do not be discouraged by those who hurt God’s Word
Some people claim to be ministers of the gospel, but they walk in deceit and ruin the Word of God and destroy our work. It somehow makes us fall discouraged and then lose heart. But let us not forget that we got this service from God, and Him we must faithfully serve to the end, as the Apostle says:
Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we received mercy, we do not lose heart, but we have renounced the things hidden because of shame, not walking in craftiness or adulterating the word of God, but by the manifestation of truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God. (2 Corinthians 4:1-2)(NASB)
Do not be discouraged by people who reject the Gospel
Do not take this as the rejection of your person. They reject the person of the Savior and with it they reject the salvation of their soul. But do not stop to tell people about Christ.
And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. (2 Corinthians 4:3-4)(NASB)
Do not preach yourself
This will get you tired soon and it is a great injustice. Those who preach themselves disappoint themselves quickly and even a greater disappointing expects them when they meet Jesus Christ. Apostle Paul did not lose heart because he did not preach himself, as he wrote:
For we do not preach ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your bond-servants for Jesus’ sake. (2 Corinthians 4:5)(NASB)
Keep your heart in God’s light
Do not let anyone influence you in this world concerns, or interfere with little things to put into shade, or withhold the light of God come into your heart.
For God, who said, “Light shall shine out of darkness,” is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6)(NASB)
Always carry about in the body the dying of Jesus Christ
We have no power to persist in the ministry of the Gospel, but a great power coming from God works in us. In our weaknesses, in persecution and mockery of people we should remain faithful to the call that we have to preach the Gospel and so we carry about in our bodies the dying of Jesus:
But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves; we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So death works in us, but life in you. But having the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, “I BELIEVED, THEREFORE I SPOKE,” we also believe, therefore we also speak (2 Corinthians 4:7-13)(NASB)
Work with the hope of resurrection
The ministry of the Gospel can not and will not be rewarded any time on this earth. Conversely, people curse us, mock us, persecute us and deny us for preaching the Truth. Let us rejoice and work in the hope of our future resurrection.
knowing that He who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and will present us with you. For all things are for your sakes, so that the grace which is spreading to more and more people may cause the giving of thanks to abound to the glory of God. (2 Corinthians 4:14-15)(NASB)
Renew the inner man
Our outer man is the one that loses heart and is discouraged. If we do not maintain a close connection with God through studying the Scriptures, through prayer and fellowship with people who renew the inner man, then we quickly lose heart again. Apostle Paul says:
Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day (2 Corinthians 4:16)(NASB)
Realize the ratio between the present affliction and the future glory
Many are the affliction of a man who dedicated himself to serving the Gospel. How you can not be sad when you see the hardness of people, when you see the indifference of those who claim to be ministers of the Gospel and how some soar more after material things than after the holy ones. Do not be overcome by sorrow …
For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, (2 Corinthians 4:17)(NASB)
Look at the things not seen
The things that are seen always discouraged people who wanted to live by faith. That’s why we have to look at the things not seen. After all, this is the definition of faith, as it is found in the Epistle to Hebrews, when it says:
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. (Hebrews 11:1)(NASB)
Therefore, as ministers of the Gospel, let us not be discouraged by things that are seen but to look in the future to see what is not seen, but will come true for us if we remain committed to the work of God to which He has called us.
While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:18)(NASB)
Let us not lose heart.
Translated by Felicia Rotaru