Why Go On?

That is the question I asked of my husband the other night. There are elements in my own life, my family, and in the world around me that keep trying to discourage me from being a follower of Christ; keep telling me it's no use, it doesn't work, it's too complicated, etc...

What, then, should I do?

In the thick of the battle I wonder why I keep doggedly fighting on. I have so many questions and fears concerning this life of a follower (a soldier) of Jesus Christ. I am buffeted on every side and made to feel it really is a losing battle. I see only in a dim, foggy sense. Much of the way is shrouded in unknowns. What do I have to offer anyway? I am too poor and ignorant to give anything.

This Christian life...it requires absolute faith in the One I am following. But what if my faith runs low?

This morning, I came across the parable of the ten servants who were given ten pounds of silver and instructed to invest it. This passage in Luke 19 proved to be a thoroughly conclusive answer to my question. Isn't the Word of God amazing?

"A nobleman was called away to a distant empire to be crowned king and then return. Before he left, he called together ten of his servants and divided among them ten pounds of silver, saying, 'Invest this for me while I am gone.' But his people hated him and sent a delegation after him to say, 'We do not want him to be our king.' 

"After he was crowned king, he returned and called the servants to whom he had given the money. He wanted to find out what their profits were. The first servant reported, 'Master, I have invested your money and made ten times the original amount!'

"'Well done!' The King exclaimed. 'You are a good servant. You have been faithful with the little I entrusted to you, so you will be governor of ten cities as your reward.'

"The next servant reported, 'Master, I have invested your money and made five times the original amount.'

"'Well done! The King exclaimed. 'You will be governor over five cities.'

"But the third servant brought back only the original amount of money and said, 'Master, I hid your money and kept it safe. I was afraid because you are a hard man to deal with, taking what isn't yours and harvesting crops you didn't plant.'

"'You wicked servant!' The king roared. 'Your own words condemn you. If you knew that I'm a hard man who takes what isn't mine and harvests crops I didn't plant, why didn't you deposit my money in the back? At least I could have gotten some interest on it.'

"Then, turning to the others standing nearby, the king ordered, 'Take the money from this servant, and give it to the one who has ten pounds.'

"'But master,' They said, 'He already has ten pounds!'

"'Yes,' The king replied, 'And to those who use well what they are given, even more will be given. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away. And as for these enemies of mine who didn't want me to be their king - bring them in and execute them right here in front of me.'"  Luke 19:11-27

The king entrusted those servants with money to invest, then left for a distant empire. They could all have yielded to doubts and fears because they didn't know when he would return. But instead, a few servants were faithful, willing to work for a master who was absent.

I would suppose some of their attempts at investing failed. It may have gotten rather discouraging. But they did something with what they were given instead of sitting back in fear, unbelief, cynicism, and laziness.

Who likes making mistakes? I certainly don't! I get highly distressed by my fumbles and failings. But it is pride and sloth and unbelief that chooses to hide away and protect myself by doing nothing.

Is it not much better to take what is handed to me by my Lord and invest it in His Kingdom? He never said it had to be invested perfectly properly every time or else I lose my chance. He never said the servants all had to do the same thing or accomplish the same amount. Some returns were ten times the original amount and some only five times, but He commended both of them for having done something with what they had been given.

The one who hid his silver and did nothing with it was the one who lost everything. Discouragement and disillusionment led him down the wrong path. The King rewards faith and obedience, but a self-centered, fearful life will ultimately lead to death.

That little parable has answered my question. Why should I go on? Because I've been given a responsibility to invest the silver the King has entrusted to me. It will not be exactly the same as what He's given to others, but I am only responsible to invest what little or much He gave to me. This story shows me it really is worth going on.

I am incredibly thankful for the Word of the Lord that guides me into all truth. Each new answer builds faith in my heart. Nothing is too difficult for those who believe in Jesus!