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Q&A: Staying Faithful Through The Unexpected?


Question:

This question comes from mwamba:

I have been a disciple for 22 years and at the start of my journey I naively thought, the disciples I was with would be with me until Jesus returns, we would all be married (never divorce), our spouses would be with us, we would all have children and remain united. As an older disciple I realize that God's plans to prosper and not harm are very different in reality to my expectations. So my rather long winded question is, do you have any scriptures, and helpful thoughts on staying faithful when what you expected to happen doesn't, the unexpected occurs, yet somehow try to navigate life holding on to faith that sometimes seems to be slipping away? I hope this makes sense...


ANSWER:

Thanks for your question, the entire bible itself is actually chalk full of reminding people to persevere and continue in the midst of difficulty. It's hard to read any book of the bible (or just about any page) and not see a motif of perseverance, reminding, and not giving up.

The book of Hebrews for instance is actually written to an older group of disciples and the main theme of the book is reminding them to not give up and continue to persevere in their faith, even after great suffering, loss, and disappointment. You can find the same motifs in John's revelation to the seven churches (Rev 2-3). Jesus himself tells us to not let our hearts be troubled (He knows how often they can tend to be troubled) for he has overcome the world (Jn 14:1; 16:33).

One of the reasons that Christians for millennia have partaken in the sacrament of the Lord's Supper is precisely what you are asking about, to remember (as instructed by our Lord in Luke 22). It is a great task of the disciple to continue to remember our Lord, and what drew us to follow him in the first place (c.f. Jn 6:68-69) year after year, heart break after heart break (1 Thes 4:13-18).

#ministry #perseverance #faith