Thus far the LORD has helped us

I was reading 2 Timothy today and remembered once again that I was reading a letter from one person to another. In this epistle, Paul is writing to Timothy, encouraging him to continue as a soldier for Christ, not compromising to the difficulties of the faith; rather, to confront the hardship with perseverance and a foundational purpose instilled by Jesus.

In turn, this had me thinking about the apostles and other disciples of Christ during the time of the Early Church. Christ had compiled a group of followers and taught them all He could within His three-year ministry before His crucifixion. After this, there was the necessary diaspora for the sake of the Gospel being taught around the world. The men split up, going in different directions, some together, others alone. However, this wasn’t the end of their story with one another. As we read the Bible we read letters written between these men, whether it is to the general audience of a church, or to a single person in need of spiritual words. Either way, prayers are sent through ink and communication flows, which never allows for their friendship to wither.

This makes me think of where I’m at right now. I think of the assortment of friends I’ve been blessed with, but also the ministries each of us have been given. We’re all studying different fields, we each have different interests, but we all have a common theme of Christ and our willingness to become bond-servants to Him. Graduation is next year and we shall inevitably disperse, which bring the daunting fear of never seeing one another again. These letters give me hope. They are an example of what we can be, and honestly, what I think God would like us to be. I have a friend who is working in Mozambique for the Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) as a head engineer. He went over there immediately after graduation, entered a land where he didn’t know the language, and was in a position where communication was critical. He enjoys the work very much, but the lack of community is burdensome and discouraging. He needs these letters we see the Early Church writing. He needs encouragement and somebody to tell him to persevere. I think many of us who leave next year will need the same thing.

What also gets me excited is that this dispersing isn’t meaningless. It continues to fulfill our purpose in being a blessing to all nations, and to make disciples wherever we go. It beckons us into the adventure of life, and is a reminder that we may live the life of an apostle as well. Is it too bold to say that we’ve been commissioned to save the world? I don’t mean this in an audacious, flippant sense, but in a serious manner where our lives shall otherwise be squandered if we start living towards our own luxury.

“But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.”

May we raise our Ebenezer, and keep it upright all of our days.

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~ by Chris Kyle on April 22, 2010.

One Response to “Thus far the LORD has helped us”

  1. “Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, as some, letters of commendation to you or from you? You are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all men; being manifested that you are a letter of Christ, cared for by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. Such confidence we have through Christ towards God. Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God, who malso made us adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.”
    2 Corinthians 3:1-6

    For some reason I thought of this upon reading your entry. Hope it adds even more fullness to you and your thoughts! We are letters of God, and from each other. I like that. You’re one of my letter, as are many others, and I am your letter, along with many others. It’s like we’re all in this together or something.

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