Finish the Race

by Calvin and Lisa Wulf

Finish the Race

"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith" (2 Tim. 4:7 NIV).

I really thought God wanted me to do this ministry," she confides to her group. "I've been praying and working for months, but not much is happening. Maybe I don't have the gifts for it. Maybe I'm not really called. Maybe God just doesn't want to use me. Maybe, I should just give up."

Who hasn't been there? We feel called to a task but it doesn't turn out as we hope. Maybe it's a career move or a church project. But we're frustrated. The doors are hardly budging. Why does God use everyone but us? All of His job openings seem to be filled already.

Are we cheating ourselves by giving up too soon? Perhaps our expectations are off center. Society says we must be the biggest, best, and fastest. We're a celebrity culture. But God hands out all kinds of jobs-big and small. Maybe our "failure" is exactly what God wants us to be doing.

Could our timing be off? We're so instant-success oriented that God's timing is tough to accept. After all, a call means right now-or does it? The Lord does things in His own time. He may have lots of puzzle pieces to arrange before He's ready to place ours.

Fulfilling a call is a spiritual battle. No way around it. Obstacles, discouragement, and delays wait around every corner. How many runners give up in the dark hours just before the dawn of success? Only faith can keep us in the race.

Before you give up, consider the ways of the Lord:

Look for small blessings every day. God will encourage you.

Check your expectations. How important is mega success?

Be willing to wait. Use God's stopwatch instead of your own.

The race is won by those who endure the fight, those who keep the faith. With Christ as your personal trainer, you'll cross the finish line and hear: "Well done, good and faithful servant."

© 2001 Calvin R. Wulf and Lisa Aré Wulf

Lighten the Load TM offers resources on Christian living. It's latest publication, 107 Practical Secrets to Achieve Lasting Love On-Line, is available at www.lighten-the-load.org or at 719-578-8837.