Gospel-Centered Pro-Life Podcast
Gospel-Centered Pro-Life Podcast

Episode · 2 years ago

Ministering In Our Mess

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Ministry, especially pro-life ministry, is hard. In addition to the difficulties that ministry brings there are things going on in our personal lives that can interfere with the ministry that we are called to. The question is "do we step back or do we press in through the mess?" It's not an easy question but join us as we talk through this. 

charlotte.cities4life.org

www.sidewalks4life.com

I Am Yours, I am yours, I am yours, s and me. Lord, I welcome to the Gospel Center pro life podcast and this episode we're going to talk about ministering in our mess, and if you're wondering what that means, then stay tuned for this episode because we feel like it will be a blessing to people in any kind of ministry, especially Pro Life Ministry. I felt show tassish touch your welcome to the Gospel Center pro life podcast. We wanted to do an episode about ministering in our mess and we realize, and hopefully this podcast is a blessing to pro life people. But I mean I realize, with this one and then the last podcast that we did, the two part podcast about empowering versus enabling, that this will be more broad than just pro life ministry, but really any ministry, anybody that's involved in ministry, I think, will benefit off of these podcasts. Yes, because we all deal with our mess, and this episode in particular we're talking about ministering in our mess. Now I think in some sense at least, you know, because of our experience and just what we do, that it's heightened in prolife ministry because we're dealing with literally life and death situations. That doesn't make our ministry more important, although I think it is more important because it's what God has called me to. But it is to make us more important. It just it's our experience. Right. We have mess that we deal with, and this in particular comes with your experience, Vicki, in ministry, but we all have experiencing. I can, I'll share some of the mess that I've had to minister to. And what we mean by that is there's junk going on in our lives and our personal lives, our family lives, church life, whatever do was we all did with mess in our lives. For sure, we're all called the ministry and we're going to have to minister in that mass. And does there come a point where we need to stop doing ministry? You know, in particular, what we're talking about a sidewalk counseling ministry. is to come a point where you need to stop going out to the sidewalk because of the things that are going on in your life, or do you need to press on through that? And hopefully you know there's some situations. I just say right right away that there's some situations where yet you do need to step back from the sidewalk, you do need to step back from ministering in the pregnancy center, you do need to step back even, you know, pastors need to step back from the pulpit. Sometimes I need to step back from ministrying that capacity, but I think maybe not more often than not. But we need to be discerning and trying to figure out window. I just need to press through this now. We're not even necessarily going to be talking about sin issues. I think that can be a whole separate thing. Where we're talking about there's unrepentant sin in your life, right then that's not ministering through your mass, right, that's ministering in the midst of sin. You need to repent and and probably why, I'd say. Certainly do need to step out of ministry. So we're not really talking about that per se. What we're talking about is family issues, health issues, even, I don't know, mental issues that you're dealing with. I don't know. You know, not mental illness, just emotional stuff and all that right. So yeah, yeah, you know. And something that just occurred to me while you were speaking was sometimes that mess is the result of spiritual warfare. Yeah, that's that's an important point, different and that's why I say you know again from our experience what we're dealing with now. I'll tell folks the abortion issue and especially add the abortion clinics. That's the devil's pride and joy, right, the sacrifice of little baby boys, a little baby girls, like the devil's always been after the destruction of the image of God, and that's where it takes place, place most predominantly, I guess you'd say. And if you're going to go out there, we tell our volunteers, if you're going to come out here and commit to this, it's things a devil's pride and joy and he's not going to leave you alone. There's going to be some spiritual warfare in your life that you have not...

...experienced before if you're involved in that, and this particular ministry doesn't mean it doesn't happen in other ministries. It does. You know, people talk about when they go to be missionaries in other countries and there's a lot of just demonic activity in those countries and things that they're the spiritual warfare is heightened. That certainly true. But that is an important point, is that we're maybe talking more than anything about spiritual to warfare, the things that happened right based on the fact that you've committed yourself to the Lord to really be in the battle. Because, let's face it, most Christians, though, were we get in the spiritual battle. When you become a Christian, you're in the battle, but most Christians are not engaged in the spiritual battle. Most Christians are, you know, sitting on the pews, sidelines. When you jump into the battle, this is when the mass is really going to be kicked up and you know a thousand notches. You know it. I had I had one volunteer recently tell me, but do people think you're nutty when you talk about spiritual warfare? And I said probably, but it's still real. Yeah, and I never knew that. Honestly, I never knew that till I was on the sidewalk in front of an abortion center. And I believe was effective. And the devil does not like, yes, being affected when you advanced, when you're being used by the Lord to advance his kingdom, the devil's not just going to sit by and let you do that without some opposition. So so kind of something to think about in the background of this whole discussion today is do we then back off because we're under bitter attack? And I would say no, right, no, but there are some attacks that are so brutal, and I did experience that, that it is almost impossible not to back off. Yeah, because it's so dangerous. This is this is one of those points where I need to remind folks that we're in a spiritual battle. For sure, no matter what we're doing, if we're advancing God's kingdom, we're in a spiritual battle and we can't, we can't fight alone. That's why it's important for us to be a part of a local church. If you don't have the support, the prayer, support, the encouragement from your local church, it's really hard to get through it if you don't have other believers around you. That's one of the real blessings for being a part of cities for life. Me On the sidewalks we have a group of people who are just some of the most godly and encouraging people you'll ever meet and we encourage each other out there. So we need each other. It's can't, can't fight this thing alone, and some of the things that I've seen in pro life or abolitionists or whatever people want to call themselves, minister, and out an abortion clinic. I've seen people burn out. I've seen people crash and burn because there are loners out there by themselves and they're trying to do this thing along with no support, with no encouragement from their local church, no accountability, and it just does not go well. Right. Yeah, and the mass of their lives ends up overtaking them and they become very ineffective. I've seen that more than more than once, right place, so I can speak very knowledgeably. Yeah, I want you to get into your store because I think this will help. This will help people. Yeah, about I don't know, four years ago, four to five years ago, was when it started and I was I'd been on the sidewalk probably about a year. I had experienced spiritual warfare, but not to the extent of what happened. All in the space of about three months and in that time period in my life, really everything that I held dear fell apart. There were severe family issues. My family just really imploded. Yeah, in many areas, savings wiped out my both my parents were put in and they lost their health and had to go into assisted living and I pretty much...

...singlehandedly moved them. I was the one that went and and helped to gather all their things, went to the nursing homes and and help them select a nursing home and enormously emotionally difficult. Yeah, both my dogs, my beloved dogs, died of cancer and then I was diagnosed with breast cancer, and that all happened literally within a three month period, right. So it was a mess going on. Oh, it was such a mess and in every area and I really had no idea, yea, how I was going to survive. Yeah, there was just so much sorrow, yeah, and despair. So I had a choice. I could have stopped coming out to the sidewalk, but I didn't because I kept saying in my head I hate what's happening in my life, and I actually hated some people in my life at the time, but I hated Satan more. Yeah, and I was not going to give him the victory. Yeah, I was determined not to give him the victory and I would drive to the sidewalk for on my ministry day. At that time, I was coming out just once a week, crying my eyes out, thinking about all these things, everything that I was facing and thinking, how on earth can I minister to anyone with all that I'm struggling with? And I would get there and God would just take over, yeah, and take care of me. And I think part of it was that I was surrounded by godly people who none, a very few new, if any. Buddy, I don't think I shared with anyone out here much of what I was going through, but but I was in the midst of people who were filled with this holy spirit and loved God and and and came right surrounded me with that, with that love and knowledge of God. So there was that, which I think was critical. But there was also that in the midst of all that stuff that I was struggling with, God was using me. There was no doubt there would be women, saved, women that would come to the Lord, women that would come and talk to me, women that would choose life, and I knew God was using me as a an instrument to bring that about and it brought me so much joy, really the only joy, yeah, that I experienced was experiencing at that time in my life. Yeah, and purpose. Yeah, well, one of the realities that we see scripturally speaking, because this is not just we're not just talking experential the Bible. What the Bible teaches them, what the Bible says is most important to us, not just our experience. And we talked about spiritual warfare. People can get kind of weirded out by that. Are you talking about some cookie stuff, you know, when you're seeing angels and demons and all that, and I mean biblically the kind of stuff can happen. Angels Do show up and demons do new show up, but we're not really talking about that. What we're talking about is is some of the attacks that just come physically. We're talking about attacks that come on your mind, things that like, why am I thinking this way? Why am I you know, in just in general, just your life being under a tag. It seems like you're you're getting hit from every angle. And so we're talking about spiritual warfare. We really talking about how it hits home practically in a lot of ways and and how it can you at least. Have you tempted to back away from ministry in a time where you really just need to press in now? Yeah, again, there are times when, you know, I'll tell our volunteers that your first ministry, because a lot of our volunteers...

...or women, a lot of them homeschool moms and that kind of thing, and I tell them your first ministries to your family. So here's a gage for me. If you need to back away from ministry, is you being out here on the sidewalk taking away from your first and Primary Ministry, which is to your family? If it's taken away from that doesn't mean that there's not going to be some times, and we talked about this a little bit in there in our last couple of podcast there's going to be some times where you just have to press in and you have to you know, whatever you know, Miss, you know, soccer games or something like that out. It shouldn't be a regular pattern. So I'm not encouraging any of that, but I'm just saying there's gonna be some times some sacrifices you have to make. But if you're neglecting your first ministry, if you're neglecting your family and whatever ministry involved in, then you definitely need to rethink that thing. Right. But there is a hard and I'm listen, we're not on this podcast to give you the answer of when you need to back away from ministry and when you need to press in. I'm not. I don't think we're going to give you the exact answer they only answer we're going to say is you need to seek the Lord and you need to seek godly counsel from other people. It's always good, again, to be a part of a local church. We can talk with your pastor you can talk with other elders in the church. Of course, if you're a woman and you know if your man, talk to your wife, talk to your husband, get counseled from them, get counseled from other brothers and sisters. Hey, do I need to press in or do I need to back away from ministry? But there are some principles and there's there's a scripture that you brought out. Really think it's important for us to have a theme scripture. Yes, at least a couple of scriptures that were thinking about when we're thinking about this whole thing, ministering through our mess. So what is that scripture? Second Corinthians twelve. Second Corinthians twelve nine. Okay, and he has said to me, my grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness. Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. So that scripture really spoke to me in in one way, saying, yes, you may bring your mess to ministry and still be effective in ministry. Yeah, and I think that's kind of the main point of when I was thinking through this, that you can be a mess and still be effective and not to be afraid or feel like a hypocrite that I'm so broken, how could I poss simply help fix someone else? Yeah, while I was going through my really extreme struggles, there were some principles that I learned that sustained me and I think might be valuable to others. So I I thought of five that that I felt were lessons I had learned as as I went went through what I was going through. So the first one is hate and anger should never be our motivation. Okay, for minutes, because there can be some things going on in your life, personal issues, people that are doing things to you that are not good and taking advantage of you in certain ways, whatever. I don't know. I'm not going to name out a bunch of contime. I mean it could be a husband and wife relationship, it could be other relationship. Church relationships, even where people are taking advantage of people not doing what they should be doing from their perspective. And of course it's personally offensive. It makes you angry and and you can be anger angered and just kind of vent that anger you at the abortion clinic or whatever ministry that you're involved in. And we tell people and we put it out there. I'll refer you, guys, to to our sidewalks for life site and I talked about this article I'd wrote at the very beginning. We started putting out ball post for that website. And it's the philosophy of ministry. What is our philosophy of Ministry as Gospel sent itsild World...

Counselors? And one of those things is that our motivation cannot be hatred for abortion. We can't be motivated by hatred for abortion, by hatred for parenthood, certainly by hatred for people. And and in the same way this that that point, applause here. Hatred cannot be a motivation for ministry. It's wicked as abortion is, it cannot be our motivation for ministry. Right. It's not. It's bad to hate abortion. It's not. You should hate abortion. It's a very evil thing, but it cannot be your primary motivation. Right, and an understanding. I know when I was going through there was a great deal of anger. As I was going through my mass, I really analyzed where that anger was coming from and for me there were two main areas fear and hurt. Okay. So knowing that actually God used that revelation of using my own anger and understanding where that was coming from to better understand the people that I was ministering to do too, and feeling greater empathy towards and for them because of what I knew. I was what was the source of my anger, and it became I was not as defensive or harmed by their anger, the anger of the peep, because at at least, I don't know if that's true of all ministries, but certainly in our ministry, the people we minister to are often very angry. Yeah, at us. Yeah, we get a lot of angry tirades directed toward us. Yeah, well, from time to time, from time that time. Yeah, so I recognize that, just as as I had at times during what I was going through, fueled my anger in destructive ways. Yeah, that's what those women are often doing. Yeah, out at the abortion center the abortion minded women and it gave me a whole new to really important things, gave me a whole new insight into ministering to them, but also changed me. Yeah, it changed me. In the mess that I was going through, God was healing me and giving me new strategies. You had to more effectively deal with things that I was doing to cause some of that mess. That's it. The Lord uses mess that we bring upon ourselves and other people bring upon us to sanctify us. And ultimately, I think you'll talk a little bit more about this as we're going through, from your personal experience, but just biblically in general. Who's our example, right? Jesus example, and look, get the mess that he had to minister through. Yes, he came into his own and his own did not receive him. So he came to the Jewish people and he's the Messiah. It comes on the scene to heal their wounds and to, you know, to lead them to truth, and they outright reject him and he's dealing with, you know, brick law after brick wall in Ministry and Ultimately He's crucified right, just completely rejected. All he does is good for people and they want to accuse him of being, you know, he's casting demons out of people. There's saying you're doing it by the power of demons. Wow, he can't win for losing with these people, right. And he's are ultimate example of ministering through the mass. And yet, you know, we see in Christ that he's always going to the father, he's always clinging to the father, he's always, you know, confiding, I guess you could say, in the father and and and that's his source for life, so to speak. Now he's, of course, the divine son of God, but he's showing us in his humanity, because he lays that that divinity in a sense aside, and in his...

...humanity showing us what it is to be in fellowship with a father and the minister out of that. And that's an important point exactly. And that's where where he found his strength and that's where we find our strength and instead of focusing on how weak we are, how reviled we are, whatever, yea, because seen on God. You know, the Apostle Paul, you know, you read that scripture from the Second Corinthians right, another scripture in Second Corinthians, very early on Second Corinthians, chapter to this is one of my favorite scriptures when it talks about sufficiency and being sufficient in ourselves. The danger is when we think we've got it together, that we don't have mess going on, we've got it figured out and we can minister in our own sufficiency, that would be that would be a terrible trap to fall into. Yeah, so, if nothing else, maybe this podcast will help you from from falling into that Chap, because when you think you've got it figured out and you can do this in your own strength, you're in the worst place you could possibly be in. But this is sack Corinthians, to Second Corinthians, to and verse fourteen, and says now thinks me to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ. Our triumph is in Christ, not in in and of ourselves, and through and through us, diffuses the fragrance of his knowledge in every place, for we are to God, the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. To the one we are the Roma, the aroma of death leading to death, and to the other, the aroma of life leading to life. Who is sufficient for these things? And so he's talking about the Ministry of the Gospel. He's talking about going in. I mean, look at the life of the Apostle Paul. He's going into areas where people are trying to kill him. There are people who are refusing his message and casting him out of the city and threatening to kill him, and mobs are raising up against him, and then there are people who are receiving the message of the Gospel and there are all kinds of miracles taking place through this brother. So he's seeing, like both extremes and he's recognizing in this he says, to one we are the fragrance of death leading to death, like they hate us, they want us to get away from we are stinching their nostrils, and to the other where fragrance of life leading to life. He says, who's sufficient for these things, like who can deal with both of these extremes? Who can deal with the tension of ministry? Who can deal with the mess in personally, in our lives, and the mess that ministry itself brings? Who's sufficient for these things? As a rhetorical question, nobody is. That's why our sufficiency, I think, he goes later on to say in Second Corinthians or another place, he says that our sufficiency is in Christ, and so it's clinging to Christ as our sufficiency as we're dealing with the mess. But continue with what you write and will just piggybacking off of that idea just just briefly. If turning, turning to Christ in the midst of our mess is critical, because I have seen some people become bitter and angry at God in the midst of their mess, blame it all on him, say why is this happening to me, and I think that just feeds again into the sense of you know, I deserve better. Yeah, and no, we don't. We all deserve hell yeah, but when we are weak and when we completely submit and lose our pride. I had no pride that it was me doing anything on that sidewalk because I was bringing nothing to that sidewalk. Yeah, but Christ really filled me. Yeah, and empowered me to a point where really even I was surprised, like how is this happening? Out of here, all the tripture. I believe it's the Apostle Paul Soo, who says that we have this treasure in earthen vessels. So all we are as these earthen vessels and we think of earthen vessel, you know, and that day and age we're talking just a common vessel. We're just there's nothing special about us, an earthen vessels, not like a brass or gold or silver vessel. It's just a common vessel. That's what that's what he's saying. That's what's implied there. We have this treasure. So imagine putting an awesome treasure,...

...a bunch of gold, in a just old clay pot. That's that's kind of the picture there. We have this treasure which is God's spirit, gots truth, God's word, that's put in these common vessels. There's nothing special about us. It's God's truth. That really that really is. It makes the difference and you have to understand. I think if we have this mentality that there's something special about us, that God somehow needs us, then we're going to crash and burn pretty easy. Yeah, that's really good. and seeing the mess and being honest about the mess it's going on in our lives helps us to see our sufficiency in Christ and helps us to see our weness. And his strength is that that Second Corinthians fourteen passes. His strength is made perfect in weakness. So when we're weak and we ain't got it figured out and we can do this ourselves. The fruit that is being born, all glory goes to God and and you know will say God did it through me, he used me like he used a donkey, but that's that's simply it. I was just a vessel that he used, and he'll use you too, you know exactly. So the second point that I wrote down as I was thinking through the principles was that it's similar to the first one, that hate and anger, anger will never sustain us in ministry. Yeah, we will burn out very quickly. And you know, great versus James, James One hundred and twenty, for the anger of Man Does Not Produce the righteousness of God. So in my own story, I was, like I had said earlier, I was filled with anger and hurt and pain, but I come to the sidewalk and start ministering and what replaced all of that was just utter joy. Yeah, the joy was that God was using me and that I knew he was using me because I knew I couldn't do it and I knew that it was this this this unbelievable spirit that was working through this very broken in vessel. That is such a powerful thing to have and and to experience. So it was joy that kept me coming back and that joy persist there is there's really the one of the happiest places that I am is on the sidewalk crazy, and not because we and not because of all the horror that is happening in that building, but because the glory of God is exhibited by every volunteer that is there, filled with the spirit and allowing themselves to be used by him. It is beautiful, yeah, to behold. Yeah, so do you have anything to add? Add to them? That's that's good point. Like said, it ties into that first point, right. And so the third point is our model for ministry should be Jesus, and I we mentioned that. They is our model for ministry. You know, the like. You had said something about the bracelets that people used to wear. What would just what would Jesus do? What would Jesus do? What would Jesus do? WWJAD, it was all over the place. I forget what what decade that happened, but tshirts on bracelets became kind of trite. Yeah, it's true. Yeah, it is true. I think even more biblically we can look at what did Jesus do? Like your have biblical example. We don't have to ask ourselves what would Jesus do? We can look in the scription and say what did Jesus do? What did he do when he experienced opposition? What did he do when he was ridiculed? What did he do when family members, I mean he had points where his brothers mocked him like you know, if you if you listen, if you're the son of God and you do these miracles will, why aren't you out there in the public doing them? You know? And so he certainly dealt with a lot of the mess of life and ministered through it, again clinging to the father, and I think that's that's the most important point, as it has to do with this point. Is Our model of ministry is Jesus.

What did Jesus do? Is He always sought the father's will. He always clean. You could find Jesus out praying right is discible to find him praying. He's seeking God, he's clinging to the Lord and that's not always easy to do when you're dealing with the mess. You know, I had a time in my life my wife this was back on our twins, my wife was pregnant with our twins. There eight years old now, right. But I was coming out. I had been coming out for a couple of years at that point and we've been coming out as a family to the sidewalks to minister at the abortion clinic. That was just when I was coming out on Saturday's. A did another job at that time and and thankfully the Lord Graciously Open the door for me to do this and on a more full time basis, but at that time I was not. I was doing other things anyway. The point is my wife within the hospital for about three months with the twins hooked up to all these things and all these you know, censors and all that, because they thought that the twins weren't going to make it. And that was a difficult mess. Let me just tell you. My wife is, you know, forty five minutes away and, yeah, I have for the children at home. We're trying to home school and trying to work and then still trying to do ministry on the sidewalk and and there were Saturdays where, you know, I was committed, I really was. I was like God, I'm going to go there in as much as I can. That was all by the grace of God's not because I'm special and great and whatever, and I don't believe that at all. It's all by the grace of God. I'm like, as much as I can, I'm going to go. Then there are times I couldn't go. I had to go visit my wife in the hospital, I had to your deal with the children, but I would make it more often than not right and I would. I'm much dread going because I'm dealing with all this mess and as I'm going I'm like, man, I need be going here. What I got so much junk going on my life. And when I would get there, though, it would be like the heaven opens, that happens, open up exact and I feel, and I think here's the point, is I feel the pleasure of my father, like he sees I've pressed through this mess. I didn't let the devil win and I pressed through. And it might be I came out and stayed for an hour, I stayed for two hours or whatever, but it's like it's not about me, it's not about me feeling good, it's about the Lord. But as children of God, there is a sense in which the pleasure of the father in our lives is important and you see that in the life of Jesus. You know, the father speaks from heaven. This is my beloved son and whom I'm well pleased. It's like affirm ah that we get from the father. It's like your kids, you know, and they've they've done something good right and they get that affirmation. They feel good and that good feeling of doing the father's will will continue to motivate us. Sure. Well, you know, we all want to hear well done, good and faithful servant. I think that's Biblical, then that is that is where we want to end up. Yeah, yeah, absolutely, but that point of clinging to the father in the midst of that season of my life, and I've had other seasons where I bualt with other stuff going on, like major league. We all did with stuff on a daytoday basis. But like I'm talking like majorly dealing with stuff and learning to cling to the father, learning to not neglect prayer, to be in prayer and as much as I can, and being in the word in as much as we can. We can't neglect those things. New Man can't live on bread alone, but every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. We need to be in God's Word and had I not been by His grace in prayer and fellowship with him, I don't think I could have made it through that season. And you know, as a family we came out on the other, the other side of that season, and it just so such a blessing to look back and see God brought us through that. And and people ask me, how did you get through that season? It was it was hard. Right, yeah, it was hard, but looking back I don't remember it being that hard. Down the midst of it it was hard, but looking back I just see the grace of God through it. Right, I'm sure you've probably have experienced that, but I found through my most difficult seasons is when I felt God was the closest. Yeah, I've had other people say...

...they felt that he had slammed a door in their face. That was not my experience. I could just pray for hours. I was consumed with God because really he was all I had left. That's kind of how I felt. I had nothing else. But I've heard your story and your wife, Courtney, share that experience with moms that we minister to. What what you all went through with the twins and it's been very powerful in helping. Yeah, the people that you minister to. And there is just no doubt that God uses the messes in our life to then go on and help others. And there is a verse that I can't quite remember word for word, but that that God does use the struggles in our life so that when we survive get through them, we can then go on and minister to others. Yeah. So the fourth point that, oh, I did want to say that in the ministry, our ministry should be modeled on Jesus. You made it the, I think, the most important point, that we should be like Jesus and in the continual turning to the father. But I was thinking about that. How would I have characterized Jesus during the time here on our just in general, describe him, and the first word that would come to my mind would be love. Yeah, he was filled with love, he was filled with truth, for sure, but I don't picture him as angry. Okay, there were periods of anger, righteous anger, when he overturned the tables or when he would be angry with his particularly the the Pharisees, but that wasn't how I would characterize him. The the overwhelming picture of Jesus was of calm. He was the one that calmed the storm, not the one that stirred up the storm. Yeah, and I think that that's really important, at least for me, keeping that picture as I'm standing in a in a ministry that has a lot of antagonism being directed towards those of us who are ministering. Yeah, we are to reflect Jesus. Jesus was calm and confident and filled with truth and able to help the others. Yeah, absolutely. So. A fourth point is that the messes in our life are no surprised to God. Yeah, and they I think we have to be very careful if we say they excuse us from ministry. Yeah, because really all of us are in some sort of a mess all the time. At least I am. Maybe I'm unusual, but if I use the man just in general, human beings are are flawed and broken and we are surrounded by other human beings that are flawed and broken right our families and in our circles and work and all of that. So no, everybody has messes there down for sure. So if we're called ministry and we're waiting until we're done with the mess. Yeah, we'll be waiting forever. Yeah, we've never be in fattervagnistry. You've left yourself in a mess by not stepping out in faith and believing that's right. The Lord can move in the midst of that. Yeah. Yeah. So our the the fifth point, which was the final point that I came up with just out of my own experiences. This is in no ways a definitive complete list, but it were just some of the main principles that I came up with. Our motivation of all our behavior and ministry should be to glorify God. Yeah, and a great verse with that, as First Corinthians thirty one. So, whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. Yeah. Yeah,...

...and that again, it does into to love. Yeah, it does into a proper understanding of love, a proper perspective of love and a pop a proper direction of love. What I mean by that is, you know, Jesus, this gives the too great commandments. Love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, mind, Sol and strength, and love your neighbor as yourself. So it's not just that love should be our promo, primary motivation for ministry, because if it's just love for human beings and love for people, you love for unborn children, love for women, love for people who are poverished or whatever. If that's our primary motivation, it's the cart before the horse. Our first motivations should be a love for God, and because we love him, then we love our neighbor and we can probably show love toward our neighbor and we can probably love our neighbor like we should if we first are connected to God through love for him. Yeah, because if we're motivated by just love for people, especially if you're involved in the ministry that we're in, we're dealing with and we certainly love the women, no doubt about it. But if our primary motivation is love for women, these poor innocent women that are in these difficult situations, are going to be burned real quick because you're going to find that they don't love you back. They're not some of them, some type. You know what, it's almost as bad as as being motivated by hate being being motivated by love. In any rest. That in yes, in terms that you're going to be disappointed in either way. Yeah, you know, because you're you were going exactly where. My thoughts for going as you were speaking, that they don't always treat us back with love, and it is it would be very easy, and I have seen many volunteers burn out because they're so disappointed. I gave my all, I was so good, I was so kind, I was so loving, and they still rejected me. Yeah, well, yeah, and that's why it has to be loved for God and a desire to see God glorified through our ministry, because if it's not a desire to see God's glory, if it's only a desire to help poor, innocent people or whatever, then again we're going to be disappointed. And you know, it's an unbiblical motivation. It's all about God's glory and it kind of ties into this idea that even though there are victories and we see victories on a regular basis, that we can't take ownership of those victories just as much as we can't take ownership of the defeats. I'm sure we've probably shared that in a podcast before, something we tell our folks. We can't take ownership of the victories, and we don't. We Give Glory to God and we're just these earthen vessels that God has chosen to use and he'll use any earthen vessel that that he wants to use. But we also can't take ownership of the defeat. And if it's love for God and I'm motivated by love for him, then really the outward results, as easy is for me to say and hard as it is for us to really walk in, don't matter. That's come out here because of God. I'm out here to glorify God. So, whether babies are saved or not, I'm going to be here because it's not about whether babies are saved or not. It's not about whether I feel good about myself or not. It's about God's glory. He's called me to be here, so I'm going to do it, whether there's an outward result or not. Now again, that's you for me to say, and it's really hard to do when you're involved in ministry and you might not see. I mean there's days where we're out there and we see twenty, thirty, forty babies going to that abortion clinic that are being killed by their mothers and fought by their mothers through the abortionist and the fathers are there and doing nothing about it. Yeah, and it can be very discouraging when you don't see anybody choose life. Yeah, we have to remind ourselves constantly this is not about me, it's not even about them. It is about God and I'm out here to bring glory to His name and obedience to him. That's right, that's right. I love this verse from Niam Neamia, Ndred and ten and do not be grieved for the joy of the Lord. It's your strength. Yeah, yeah, the love of the Lord and the joy of the Lord. Yes, what empowers us. Amen. Well, we hope you guys were encouraged by this podcast. We were certainly encouraged by going through these points and...

...reading these scriptures and talking about these things. We hope to be able to put this up on our sidewalks for life site as a blog post to help encourage people involved. Again, guests, please share these podcasts with other people and and share with us some of your feedback that you have and it was it a good podcast. Would you like to hear more stuff like this? Are there other suggestions that you have for subjects we can cover? We'd love to hear those things and and we'd love to hear just how you guys are being blessed or maybe not blessed by the podcast criticisms that you have. We certainly could do better and we know that, but we do hope that you are blessed by we hope you visit our website, that sidewalks for lifecom, sidewalks on number four lifecom, and then locally Charlotte dot cities for Life Dot Org, and again that you share the content that we put on these websites with other people. We pray God's blessing of you as you seek to serve him, whatever ministry he calls you to. Just seek to do it for his glory and understand the sufficiency is not in you, it's not in your wisdom and your ability, but your sufficiency comes from Christ and you cling to him. He is the vine and we are the branches. If we abide in him, will bear much fruit. So God bless you as you continue to bear fruit, as you abide in him, and and we'll talk to you soon. Give me our love for love, give me our loft for gratitude. I know it will cost me my life. Nothing's too precious. And some that you.

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