Paving the Way through Perseverance
There are many similarities between pastoring and coaching. Whether it is a church or a team, the leader must provide guidance, leadership, assurance, inspiration, encouragement, and so much more. However, neither a pastor nor a coach can be an effective leader unless the congregation or the team is fully committed to the mission at hand and willing to work together.
As someone who is currently pastoring and coaching, I can tell you that there is no greater joy than watching a congregation or a team work hard, demonstrate dedication, deal with adversity, stay positive, and ultimately triumph.
As I head into my 14th month at Oak Chapel, (and 15th year as a head coach), I can tell you that I am deeply moved, exceptionally gratified, overwhelmingly joyful, and exceedingly proud of each and every one of you.
We may yet be small in number, but we are great in devotion and desire to serve the Lord with energy, excitement, and enthusiasm. Above all, we have displayed a resilient spirit and a desire to persevere, regardless of the circumstances.
The Book of James invites us to “consider it pure joy whenever we face trials of many kinds because we know that the testing of our faith produces perseverance.” Therefore, we are encouraged to “let perseverance finish its work so that we may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”
Having perseverance is a gift, but it also requires a commitment. Few things in life come easy, and there is a sense of satisfaction when one triumphs after experiencing difficulties along the way. Right now, things may look a little bleak, but there is hope on the horizon.
Continuing along in the Book of James, we read, “Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.”
There is a great and glorious reward awaiting us at the end of this journey, reminding us that no matter what, we will triumph in the end. But, there is also encouragement in this world for a better tomorrow when we live a life of holiness and obedience according to God’s Holy Word.
As your pastor, I encourage you to continue to fight the good fight, to not let the daily struggles get you down, but instead to persevere. In so doing, it is my belief that you will not only survive but also flourish — and so will our church.
Such a positive attitude will also lift up others who are struggling and serve as an example to our young people to follow the ways of the Lord, just as we were encouraged to do so by those who mentored us. In this way, we provide a light in the darkness and bring honor and glory to the name of the Lord God Almighty.
Until we meet again, Be Blessed! – Pastor John