Tenacious: persistent, determined, tireless, patient,
steadfast, unwavering, unswerving, unshakable, unyielding
I was listening to a podcast on our way to Guatemala a couple weeks ago of a ministry in Africa that has been working to reach a specific people group that have never had the opportunity to hear about Jesus. The testimony of everything it took to reach this specific people group was incredible. Over and over again they talked about the tenacious love that drove their commitment to reaching this people group with the gospel. As I listened to this podcast my heart became convicted. How often can we say we love tenaciously? It would be easy to blame our culture for our good intention surface type love, yet we each have the choice to boldly love. Most of us just choose the easy way out. If I was to be honest and evaluate my love I would find it to be produced out of selfish intent. Most of the time we love when it's convenient for us. We love when we benefit from the outcome. We love when it makes us feel good about ourselves. We love when we think we have to. Our team got to experience what tenacious love looks like during our week in Guatemala. On one of our home visit days we got in the car and began our hour drive to one of the church plants outside of Poptún. It may not have been considered a "mountain", but to our Florida team the drive was through more than just a hill! Up and down and around we followed the pastor in his truck while our team was in the van. We were almost to our destination when the pastor's truck got stuck on one of the hills. Our van tried to pull the truck up the hill without any luck. Our team and the locals tried to push it up the hill and it still wasn't going to happen. Finally a local truck filled with people came and pulled both vehicles up the path. At this point in our week we were tired. We already had laid the cement slab and distributed all the wheelchairs. I would be lying if at one point I didn't think about how easy it would be to just turn around and visit some of the families we had already passed by. In all reality it would have been super easy to say, "let's turn around." Little did I know that at the top of this hill was a pastor who desperately needed some encouragement. His church building was a small room maybe about 15x20 feet. The walls were infested with termites. The pastor lost his bean crop this year because of a severe drought which was his only means to feed his family. In their home they all sleep in the same room. All seven of them divided up into three beds at night. Their mattresses were maybe an inch thick and laid across thin pieces of twine. Yet, this pastor, his wife, and their five children have faithfully served this church for the last four years. They love Jesus. They want nothing more than to serve Him. This family has a tenacious love for their neighbors. The kind of love that is only produced through having a passion for Jesus. If you were honest with yourself, how would you evaluate your love? We each have a different story, yet there are still people all around us that need to experience the tenacious love of Jesus. Our story for His glory. There are people all over the world striving to reach the ends of the earth out of love for the lost. It's not easy. There are always hurdles. Yet, God is faithful and His grace is more than enough! I pray this week that you would push through the hurdles to love those around you. Let your love be the overflow from your passion for Jesus. May you reach those around you with the same tenacious love as Jesus gave you!