Dr. Jun Go, IGSL Alumnus Class 2012
Have you ever been in a situation where you couldn’t help but ask, “Why is this happening to me?”
Last July was my final set of classes at Dallas Theological Seminary and everything went smoothly. I’ve finished all the readings, and all my papers were done and submitted. I was excited because those were the last days of classes, and I can focus on the dissertation. On July 4, early in the morning, I was ready to go to class when I got a phone call from Manila. My brother was in an accident. He fell from their house stairs and by the time that they found him, he was unconscious. He was brought to the hospital, and he regained consciousness. By the time he had his MRI, blood clots had already spread out and they have to remove half of his skull and he went into a coma. Until today we’re still waiting for a miracle to happen.
I asked my teachers if I can go home. They said no and that if I go home, I will need to repeat everything. I wanted to quit but my family encouraged me to stay. The next day, my father-in-law died. And I ask them the same question, and they said “one day”, which is impossible. All the time I was thinking if it was still worth it to stay and continue seminary. I was planning to quit my work as an architect to go full time in ministry, but since my brother is in comatose, now I have to look out for our business.
We’ve all gone through situations that make us think of quitting. Situations with our family, studies, and supporters. When circumstances test us, we get dismayed and we say, “God, I want to quit!”
Well, we are called to a special kind of ministry. We are called by God to minister and to share the gospel and we want to finish well. God has put us in a situation where quitting is not an option.
Let’s look at Hebrews 12:1-3.
In chapter 11, we see a list of names there as part of the cloud of witnesses. In the original language, the word for cloud of witnesses means martyr. Meaning, they’ve used their lives as an example to follow for us to finish well. They are our examples for persevering.
To finish well, you need to focus on three things:
1. Remove anything that hinders you.
First, in our daily routines. The first things that we do when we wake up affect our time and sometimes take all of our time. And when we look back on the time we’ve wasted, we realize that we can’t get it back. Next, in our ministry load. Do you have so many ministry responsibilities that they hinder you from concentrating on the ministry that God specifically designed for you? Take one ministry at a time.
2. Throw off the sin that so easily entangles.
Often, we make up excuses for the sins that we have. We call lies white lies. We put colors to it to make it look better. We need to come to God, ask Him to reveal our sins, and ask for forgiveness. The race is so important to be hindered down by the weight of our sins.
3. Persevere in running the race no matter what the circumstances. Wherever your eyes are focused, there you’ll end up being. If we focus on quitting, it will be hard to run the race. But if we focus on persevering no matter what the situation is, we will persevere!
Quitting is a serious and dangerous habit to have. Once it is in your system, it is very hard to remove. Every time we think of quitting, it will become our fall back. But if we persevere, we will finish. We are called to make a difference for Christ. It takes self-determination to persevere. Satan will do everything to pull us down. But Jesus said, “Take heart! I have overcome the world.” The race that you are on is God’s design for you. He is waiting on the finish line so focus on him. Finish well!