My wife was lying in the hospital bed in terrible pain, she had just gone through an emergency c-section and the pain medication was quickly wearing off. I was trying to comfort her and distract her from the pain she was dealing with, but it was no small task. She was suffering and it felt like I couldn’t do anything to help. I felt totally ineffective. Finally, the medicine they had given her kicked in and she went to sleep. I sat there holding my new daughter in my arms and watching my exhausted wife sleep. As a new dad I felt a tremendous amount of responsibility.
As a follower of Jesus Christ, I want to be effective for Jesus. I recently read a passage of Scripture that I preached on that has made me think a lot. It feels like it hit me over the head like a 2X4! It has me asking myself the question, “Am I content to be ineffective in this world?” and my answer is “No” I’m not content with that. Here is the Scripture:
“For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 1:5-8
The thought that I could know Jesus as my Savior and at the same time be ineffective and unfruitful is not a pleasant one. In the beginning of this passage of Scripture the command is given to “make every effort to supplement your faith with…” So, something that I take from this passage is that we have to make a commitment in our hearts that we follow through with in our actions to make every effort with God’s help to grow in the godly characteristics listed in this Scripture. It is easy to say this
The definition in the dictionary for ineffective is: “not producing any significant or desired effect.” As a follower of Jesus Christ, I am not content to be ineffective. I want to be as effective as possible for God’s Kingdom, because of what Jesus did for me by dying on the cross so I can be forgiven of my sins and rising again to give me hope and a relationship with him. One of the ways that I am reminded to tell others about Jesus is being grateful for the cross every day! When I start my day with a grateful heart for what he has done for me, it molds my perspective, so that I am focused on Jesus work on the cross and it keeps my thinking of my responsibility to share Jesus’s love with others and to tell them about Jesus.
My prayer for you is that you too are not content to be ineffective in this world. At Neath Church one of the ways we are reminded of our responsibility to be effective in this world is our Vision, “To be a church where lives are changed as God is glorified and enjoyed, known and made known.” As a church, this is our goal. This is our vision. We are not content to be ineffective in this world.