Name: Pastor Daniel Kim
Lenten Commitment: Read through the book of Jeremiah.
The proponents of the prosperity gospel argue that Christians are immune to failures. However, the Bible tells us otherwise. Reading through the Book of Jeremiah during Lent opened up my eyes to see that Christians’ failure is not only inevitable but a way God accomplishes his sovereign plan through our broken lives.
The prophet Jeremiah proclaimed God’s message to the people of Judah for forty years. But his ministry was far from being successful in the human standard. Although he preached many years in the streets and Temple striving to bring people back to the Lord, only a very few came back. In fact, he was successful in making just one disciple in forty years of his ministry. Yes, you read that right. Only one genuine follower in the total span of forty years of his ministry!
These years of failures brought Jeremiah to tears and close to giving up many times. Then restoring the discouraged prophet, the Lord spoke and said, “If racing against mere men makes you tired, how will you race against horses?…” (Jeremiah 12:5) God didn’t say this to discourage or toughen up the distressed prophet. He was reminding Jeremiah that he was made for more! Yes! Jeremiah forgot the fact that God was the one who called him to the ministry and He is the one who supports him.
Reading this part of Jeremiah not only encouraged me to rise again from my own despairs, but it gave me a passion for reaching for higher things. If God is the one who called me to live for Him, it’s pointless to feel hopeless or discouraged when facing failures. Failures are inevitable, but through them, God humbles and teaches me to hold on to his strength, which is much more powerful than my own, that I may accomplish His great will in our lives. In that sense, I believe failures are God’s precious tools to make us stronger in Him.
A person’s life is a mosaic of many failures with a few successes. Even the most accomplished faces failures, breakdowns, weepings, and disappointments in different seasons of their lives. In Biblical perspective, these failures are precious moments we can experience God and His power. But instead of cherishing the moment of our weaknesses, we often hide them under the rug with contempt and shame. But think about how God’s people like Jeremiah and Paul treated their weaknesses. They boasted of their shortcomings and failures more than their successes.
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
2 Corinthians 2:9
English Standard Version
I believe Lent is a time that reminds God’s people how God accomplished His will to rescue us from Satan and Sin. God accomplished salvation through His death and humiliation– through his weaknesses. So, if we are the followers of Christ, let us boast in the cross and our infirmities that reveals the power of God!
P.S. I would like to thank all our youth group students who participated in the Lent Reflection. I was truly blessed through your testimonies. Thank you for sharing your walk with Jesus. I hope and pray that you would all continue to live as you have committed yourself to God’s calling through Lent 2018.
This post is a part of DSYG’s Lent Reflections series meant to educate and inspire readers on the season of Lent and its value in any Christian’s relationship with Christ. For more information on this series, click here.
To read more posts in this year’s series, click here.