Ever feel like giving up? Ever feel like it’s all a waste of time? Ever feel that your hard work makes no difference?
I suspect that for most who pour time and energy into the ministry of a local church there are times of discouragement when its hard to see fruit, and the temptation is to pack it all in. Here is a great verse to hold on to in times of discouragement:
“Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labour is not in vain.” 1 Corinthians 15:58 E.S.V.
The verse is an impassioned call to faithful and determined continuation in the service of the master even in the face of discouragement and opposition. I suppose that from the place of despair someone might ask “How can I know that my labour is not in vain.”
This verse is one of those verses beginning with the word “therefore” and so its contents depend on the principles expressed in the previous verses.
In this case the reason for confidence is the complete victory of Jesus Christ. Your labour in the Lord can never be in vain because it is “in the Lord” who is victorious even over sin and death.
Recently, anticipating that such a time might come along, I committed this encouraging verse to memory. It’s a great one to lock away in your mind, sharpening your sword ready to do battle in the day of discouragement.
I’ll end with the verse again, this time from The Message: “With all this going for us, my dear, dear friends, stand your ground. And don’t hold back. Throw yourselves into the work of the Master, confident that nothing you do for him is a waste of time or effort.”