Over the past month and a half, I have been reading through the Pastoral Epistles in the morning while my kids are getting ready to leave for the bus. I will read a chapter or two and last week I was using my CSB Spurgeon Study Bible and once again the Lord filled my heart with peace and hope. I have a love for Valdivia, but it is a very difficult place to do ministry. Over the past year and a half I have had seasons of weariness in the ministry. There have been moments when I have questioned many things in my heart. But last week when I read Spurgeon's comment on Titus 1:13-14 a rushing wave of God's grace swept me into His comfort. Spurgeon commenting on Titus's ministry in Crete said this:
This was bad soil, but it had to be plowed, sown; and, with an Almighty
God at the back of the gospel plower and sower, a fruitful harvest came
even in Crete. We need not be afraid of the adaptation of the gospel to
the lowest of the low. If in any quarter of the town the people are
more sunken in vice than anywhere else, there the gospel is to be
carried with more prayer and more faith than anywhere else. Depend
upon it: God can bless His word anywhere.
That was something I desperately needed to hear. The gospel is the power of God unto salvation. I would dare to say, that sometimes, we as Christians are so focused on the evil that prevails that we forget that it is the gospel that is powerful. It can, and will, overcome the evil of this world. Our focus or perspective needs constant adjustment. We always need to get our eyes back to where they belong. Get our hope set in the right spot. The Lord is doing great things. When I look at what He has done in the last year and half since we planted the church in Valdivia, I should be nothing but encouraged. When I look at my partners in other locations, hard and dark locations, locations where the soil is bad, the Lord is working. There is much to be encouraged by. The gospel is the power of God unto salvation so we plow and sow and wait eagerly for the Lord to bring the harvest.
I am excited for fresh encouragement and motivation. I have been praying with new fervor for Valdivia and for my brothers in Santa Cruz, Half Moon Bay, Colorado, and Cleveland. Would you please join me in prayer for Valdivia and wherever the Lord puts on your heart.
Soli deo Gloria