Have you ever struggled with someone? Change happens slow but how much patience do we have?
Have you ever given of yourself, prayed earnestly, encouraged them and sacrificed for their benefit but they seemed to ignore or disregard all of your efforts?
How did this make you feel?
Disrespected? Hurt? Bitter?
Did you give up on them?
Stop for a moment and think back to a time in our own life when we were headed down the wrong path.
Did anyone try to stop us?
Did anyone give us good advice?
Did we listen?
All of the leadership books, psychological methods, and biblical concepts cannot overcome an individual who chooses not to embrace the right path.
God gave us all the gift of free will. You can hope that the example we set, the prayers we offer, and the continual encouragement we give daily will someday pay off. But ultimately it is up to that individual to decide.
Their lack of acceptance should not deter your dedication but it can make the soul weary at times. How does one refresh their own soul?
We all at some point in our lives have failed to heed the voice of wisdom.
Do we remember when the advice of our mentors began to sink in?
Do we remember when our life changing moment was?
Most of us tend to only seek “wisdom and understanding” only after we have experienced personal brokenness, failure, and or tragedy.
Yet there are those around that us loved us through our “wayward journey” and never gave up on us. At times, We can be sure they were ready to give up but someone gave them hope during those dark moments.
In the Bible, many of God’s chosen people did not live to see the blessings of their efforts that God chose them to do. Their lifetime of obedience, discipline, and long-suffering paid off not in their lifetime but in the generations to come.
They are the ones we read about now and model ourselves after. They faced great opposition, persecution, and many of those they cared about chose the wrong path. Yet, they soldiered on with the hope that is within them.
If you have chosen to be a leader, to make a difference, and to influence others for the future; remember that change happens slow. Just because you are not seeing it now doesn’t mean that your efforts are in vain.
Psalm 42: 5 was written by one of the greatest leaders in the Bible. Notice his tone:
Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God
We will face difficulty, We will face opposition, and despite our efforts we will face those who will refuse our compassionate care. This does not mean we are to give up. We are to endure and learn from these moments.
Let us put our hope in the one who will never disappoint us and remember that we must stay the course. For we are called to endure and lead others in our example.
Let us be honest with God in our prayers, He knows our hearts and our soul will only be healed by the one who made it.
Let us choose to surround ourselves with passionate, dedicated, and experienced counsel to vent our frustrations to, to receive comfort, and most of all to receive encouragement.
God Bless & keep moving forward
Andy J. Starnes
Bringing Back Brotherhood Ministries