Every Christian knows that things can go wrong in the Christian life and in Christian missions, too. It’s not all a bed of blessings and roses as some might try to make it out to be. Sometimes the Christian fighter can also be exhausted to the extreme, just in different ways to what may be found in many military ops. It’s a slower, psychological exhaustion that can come from fighting the odds in an ongoing situation that doesn’t seem to let up.
Maybe that’s why the word of God exhorts us repeatedly to continue in the mission we have been given. Notice what the great ancient military commander Joshua told those fighting with him: “Be very strong and continue obeying all that is written in the book of the law of Moses, so that you do not turn from it to the right or left" (Joshua 23:6 Holman Bible). King Solomon put it another way: “Let not your heart envy sinners, but continue in the fear of the Lord all the day” (Proverbs 23:17 ESV).
Sometimes the encouragement to continue is something we need to ask for – especially when things go wrong. When Peter and John and the early Christians came under persecution, help to continue the mission is precisely what they asked for: “And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness” (Acts 4:29 ESV).
The Bible makes it clear that that is exactly the attitude God wants to see in us. Solomon, at the height of his wisdom, before his own downfall (1 Kings 11:11), recognized that God is with us to the degree that we continue: “… there is no God like you in heaven or on earth—you who keep your covenant of love with your servants who continue wholeheartedly in your way” (2 Chronicles 6:14 NIV).
It’s a central fact about walking with God and striving to complete His mission for us that we must not forget. God will continue to equip us to persevere, but we have to discard any and all thoughts of discouragement and exercise faith in the One who sets the mission parameters, and who empowers those He calls to the mission. Ultimately it is continuing that defines the true warrior as opposed to the short-term soldier or follower who falls by the way. We have that on the authority of the greatest Commander in Chief, who said specifically: “If you continue in My word, you really are My disciples” (John 8:31 Holman Bible). That’s the goal and encouragement we all need to focus on. That’s the ultimate “Charlie Mike!”