“When It’s Not Much Fun Anymore”
Psalms 51:12, “Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation.”
(A Message For Preachers)
Every new assignment begins with great joy, enthusiasm, and anticipation. Each new ministry begins with wonderful dreams and plans. But what happens when the realities of difficult places, difficult people, and difficult problems let the air out of your spiritual balloon? What happens when it is not much fun anymore? What do you do when the joy has gone out of your Christian pilgrimage and/or your heavenly assignment? It certainly does not mean you are not spiritual or that you do not love the Lord. Nor does it mean that God is not at work in your life. It simply means you are human and it is time toï¿½
1. Return To Your Bethel.
Bethel was the place where Jacob had his vision of the angels ascending and descending on a heavenly ladder; and where, after twenty years, he returned, according to his vow, to set up an altar, Genesis 35:2-7. Go back to when you were saved and later called to ministry and remember the wonder of being chosen to declare the glorious Gospel message. I often return to where I was saved and later called to preach, there I remember the vows I made to faithfully serve Him and proclaim His Word. When it is not much fun, I return to my Bethel When it is not much funï¿½
2. Refuel Your Spirit.
Isaiah 40:31 reminds us, “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run, and not be weary, and they shall walk, and not faint.” When David was in the darkness of despair he waited before the Lord and cried out unto the Lord, Psalm 40:1. The danger of ministry is the danger of a depleted vessel, ever giving out but not taking in. When it is not much fun, I refuel my spirit. When it is not much funï¿½
3. Rest Your Body.
Nehemiah discovered that “the strength of the bearers of burdens is decayed,” Nehemiah 4:10, and the work stopped. Physical fatigue fertile soil for emotional, physical and spiritual discouragement. When it is not much fun anymore take some time off, get away and be refreshed. A good nightï¿½s rest and some time away for physical renewal can make a big difference. When it is not much funï¿½
4. Renew Your Vision.
When Paul was questioned before Agrippa as to why he was so committed to Christ he replied, “Whereupon, O, king Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision,” Acts 26:19. Many pastors have suffered the loss of a vision for their ministry and their place of service. The “vision killers” have stolen your dreams. When God called you He gave you a heavenly assignment. Go back to the cross and renew your vision. Ask God to give you a fresh vision for your place of service. When it is not much fun ï¿½
5. Re-Establish Your Priorities.
Paul said, “This one thing I doï¿½”, Philippians 3:13. Walk with God, preach the Word, love your family, care for your people, take care of yourself. Set clear goals, discipline yourself to pursue those goals, and donï¿½t let interruptions sidetrack you. When it is not much fun re-establish your priorities. When it is not much funï¿½
6. Rejoice In The Lordï¿½s Rich Blessings.
Sometimes we canï¿½t see the land of milk and honey because we have our eyes on the giants. “Count your many blessings…name them one by one, and it will surprise you what the Lord has done.” Paul said, “I have learned to be content in whatsoever state I am in,” Philippians 4:11. When it is not much fun anymore I pause to thank the Lord for the many rich blessings He has so freely bestowed upon me. When it is not much fun…
7. Re-claim The Promises Of God.
A. The promise of His power, Philippians 4:13, I Cor. 10:13.
B. The promise of His perfect provision, Philippians 4:19.
C. The promise of His presence, Hebrews 13:5.
D. The promise of His purpose, Romans 8:28, Galatians 6:9.
E. The promise of His peace, John 14:27.
F. The promise of Paradise John 14:1-4. When itï¿½s not much fun…
8. Reach Out To Someone Else.
Onesiphorus found great joy in ministering to Paul and was a wonderful encourager to him, II Timothy 1:16-18. One of the delights of my ministry is that of trying to be an encourager to my preacher brothers. When it is not much funï¿½
9. Remember Those Who Have Gone Before You.
Hebrews 12:1 reminds us of the great cloud of witnesses who have faithfully run their race and are now cheering us on from Heaven. They have passed the baton of the Gospel on to us that we might faithfully run our race. Remember that we are called to be faithful, even when it is not much fun. When it is not much fun anymoreï¿½
10. Rejoice That Your Name Is Written In Heaven.
That is what Jesus said in Luke 10:20. Our greatest days of celebration are just ahead when it will be “fun” forevermore! May we fix our eyes on Jesus, Heb. 12:1. “It will be worth it all when we see Jesus!”
Conclusion: May we never forget that the source of our joy is Jesus, not any particular place of service. Delight yourself in the Lord. I pray that the Lord will make it “fun” again. Lord, would you restore the joy of our salvation…and our service?