Good things take time. In fact, the best, most enduring initiatives take years to develop. At Branches Worldwide, we understand that in a real way. Our work takes us all around the world, working with young, promising, faith-filled leaders. We help them transform their communities, and recently we began talking with an incredible leader in Thailand. He's someone who has a clear vision, a lot of potential, and is making an incredible impact on his community.
But the path to creating a relationship with him has been miles from easy! Despite multiple trips to visit him, and hours spent over meals and in one-one conversations, language issues still emerged, misunderstandings popped up, and cultural complications slowed our progress. However, the path of continuing to build a transformational relationship with him has become clearer with time.
We have to come to the reality that things don't happen fast. Progress isn't a simple formula, but is rather a puzzle being put together day by day, moment by moment.
While we know good things take time to develop, we also know that it can be challenging to stay focused and hopeful in the meantime. Projects are delayed. Initiatives are in limbo. Resources are hard to come by. However, it is the unnoticed day by day faithfulness that will determine the harvest that is reaped.
An important component of success as a leader is learning how to act when delay and frustration rear their ugly heads. Will you remain hopeful in the face of adversity? Hebrews 11:1 gives us a helpful solution. It says "Faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see."
Unfortunately, the lack of confidence that is necessary for faith can occur when the fruit of the mission you feel called to seems to become more and more distant. Every leader experiences seasons when things are unclear. Delays mount and costs rise. You lose confidence in your calling. Your vision grows more and more distant by the day. In these moments it is easy to ask questions like, "Is this worth it?" or "Is this really where God wants me to be?".
The reality is that faith is only necessary in the absence of certainty, and it is in these times when your faithfulness is put to the test. So, will you continue to sow seed after seed? Will you continue to invest your energy into being faithful moment by moment? Can you confidently declare that the harvest will come if you continue to be faithful?
Hebrews 10:6 says, "You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised." When you are faithful day by day, you can count on the promise that the harvest will be plentiful.
Regardless of where you lead, continue to invest your energy into being faithful, moment by moment. Refuse to compare the challenge ahead of you with the strength inside you. Stop viewing your challenges in comparison to your own strength, and start viewing them in comparison to the faithfulness of your God.
Our team in on an incredible journey. We know moments of delay and frustrations are coming, and we welcome the challenge to stay faithful to God's call in the middle of it. We challenge you to do the same. It is time for all of us to be faithful in little so that we can be trusted to be faithful in much. It is time to take hold of the promises of God and be confident that if God has called us to it, then he will see us through it.