I hope that each time my faith is tested, that I come through for Jesus. I read courageous stories about ancient Christians under persecution for their faith and I wonder if many of us can measure up. In the pages of history, Christians persevere through slow, violent deaths. In today’s U.S., churchgoers leave the church over what times a church service is offered, how cool the band is or isn’t, how much the ministers on staff gave personal round the clock attention to particular church attendees, or how late a service ends. It is different in other parts of the world. In those seemingly distant, surreal places on this earth only viewable through our high speed internet connections, Christians still face death at the hands of governments, religious mobs, and their own neighbors.
I’m a Christian. I’m called to share the Gospel wherever and whenever I can. I’m a husband. I’m called to love my wife as Christ loved the church. I’m a father. I’m called to teach my kids how to be followers of Jesus, protect them from harm, provide for their needs, and help them make it in this world. I’m a pastor. I’m called to make disciples of Jesus, and protect my crew from “wolves in sheep’s clothing.”
Sometimes I get to sing with the entire church as we celebrate together over what God has done. Sometimes the world becomes a total mess, and my ability to fulfill my calling as a Christian, husband, father, and pastor are challenged hard core. There are days when I show up in a room and I feel like a king, and other days where bullets fly and it feels like a war zone. No matter what, my calling is to be a disciple of Jesus Christ. And if there are bullets, I’m called to sing while the bullets fly.
Martha is a teacher. She sang songs when the bullets started flying. Endless analogies. I hope my faith can measure up.