Do you ever feel like God has abandoned you?  Do you ever feel like the path that you set out on isn’t going to work because God is no longer leading you?  Do you go through ups and downs spiritually or emotionally as you wonder about God’s involvement and direction in your life?  I do.  My spiritual life is like an extreme roller coaster ride from a wild theme park.  It’s the one that rises the highest and then plummets to its low point with unparalleled speed.

Right now Mary and I are getting ready to launch a new church and I feel particularly susceptible to these ups and downs.  One minute we are on our high dreaming about the possibilities of a new community that embodies Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount teachings, and the next minute we come crashing down as I come face-to-face with the work and potential rejection that comes with church planting.

That’s why Tim Geoffrion’s blog post, Don’t Give Up, came at such a good time.  In his post Tim points out that sometimes our greatest spiritual advances come in the midst of deep emotional turmoil.

If so, let me encourage you. You have reached a critical point in your spiritual development. Don’t lose heart. And most definitely, do not give up!

Contrary to appearances, our emotional turmoil may actually be a positive sign. Our struggles may actually be a sign of growing pains in our spiritual life—we may even be on the verge of making a major breakthrough.

This gives me hope to keep going.  It gives me hope that by digging deeper and wrestling with my inner fears and feelings of self-doubt I can have hope that I will come out the other side closer to God.  This is the kind of encouragement I need to keep going and heed his advice: “Don’t Give Up!” I hope you find it helpful as well.


2 responses to “Don’t Give Up”

  1. Hope. It is the one thing that keeps many people alive in dire survival situations and in moments when one does not have any energy left to go on. Hope is a powerful thing and I hold fast to it in the days ahead. “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.” (Heb. 10:23). Thanks for this post.

  2. Rachel Avatar

    John and Mary,
    You were such a blessing at ECC. Mary, you have the gift of being open and honest in a way that invites others into the conversation and allows everyone to “just be themselves.” Thanks for the best advice I’ve gotten in a long time- when you have people over, don’t show off your house, share it. What a great thing to keep in mind for young moms! John, you have a gentle way of bringing the truth to people. I’m sure that your kind spirit will enable you to reach many people. Best of luck with the new church plant. Know that MANY people are praying for God to use you and your family in a successful way!
    God bless,
    Rachel Berndt