Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

Dont Quit

Meditation for the week of September 21, 2008

1 Corinthians 15:58
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.

Sometimes I want to quit. Life would be so much easier if I had never set out to serve the Lord after I was saved back on that late November afternoon in 1963.

I remember what it was like to be lost and to know that I was not saved and I remember the wonder that came with finding out that “God said I was saved.” From that time on I wanted to know what pleased Him and to tell others that Christ had died for them as well. There was just one problem. I was told that everything would change the moment I was saved and that I would have no more desire to sin. However, I found out that I still did have a desire to sin. And then I began reading my Bible and found out that I had been misled. Christians shouldn’t sin, but Christians do sin. Some get drunk at the Lord’s table. Some sin so badly that sometimes they have to be socially ostracized, sometimes they have to be silenced, and sometimes they have to be rebuked. I found out that the new testament letters were written to sinning Christians so that they would quit sinning (1 John 2:1). Somehow finding out that I was not alone gave me a sense of peace and made me realize that while sin was wrong, the Lord had ways to deal with it and keep using me. And the wonder of the Lord loving me and dying for me and then using a saved imperfect sinner in His work has reminded me that I shouldn’t quit.

After I got saved, I thought all Christians had a desire to know and to do God’s will. One of my greatest discouragements has been to realize that because of my convictions I am going to live a lonely live if I continue to try to practice what I believe. One of the things I believe is that every man women and child born into this world can be saved. The blood of Christ has sufficient value and power to satisfy God on everyone’s behalf. But I also believe that there are few that are truly saved (Luke 13:23-28). But because the Gospel changes our destinies for eternity, I do worry about those who have made professions of faith without actually getting their eye off of themselves and on to the Lord. I can’t quit preaching that we must “repent and believe” and that what we do with that message will seal our destinies for eternity.

Whenever I am involved in a Scriptural project for the Lord, it seems that all the forces of evil are unleashed against me and my family and those with whom I work. Recently, we handed out free cookies and free Gospel literature at a local fair. While we were stuffing the packets with Gospel literature, we found out that I had made a mistake on the web site address and phone number used on a contact card. We had printed 1800 of them and had 800 in the packets when we saw the mistake. There were other issues and difficulties but finally we got to our booth to find out that we were put across from a display by a ski club that included a life-size demon. It almost seemed like Satan was taunting us. I just wanted to quit. Encouragement came from an unexpected source. A man who was working a booth next to ours approached us one evening and told us how much he appreciated what we were doing. He commended us for not being pushy. Hearing him say that was like hearing the voice of the Lord saying, “Your labor is not in vain or futile.”

Yes, sometimes I want to quit, but I haven’t because I can’t. But I still need to be reminded from time to time that “our labor in the Lord is not in vain.” If you are doing a work for the Lord, I am sure that you need to reminded as well.

Bruce Collins

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