As we seriously mature in Christ, it is vitally important we realize that - for the most part - those to whom we minister do not see the folly in clinging to things of the world. God's merciful forgiveness and deliverance has developed tenacious discernment within us, causing us to see clearly the emptiness of fleshly desires; but most of those to whom we minister have not come to that place.
Simply put - it's a process; whether we want it to be or not, it is. Maturing in God takes time, willingness, obedience, and lasting humility. That's why the words "patience", "enduring", "forbearing", and "persevering" hallmark so much of God's character.
You might be saying, yeah, yeah, yeah... we know all that, Sharon - and that's fine... but do you always apply that knowledge to God's assignments? Folks who are literally "assigned" to us by Daddy are so for a reason and - since God is the Master multi-tasker - we can be certain fully half of the assignment's benefits will be for us.
For example, a "General" in Christ Jesus (by Abba's definition, one who has earnestly committed to His course and plan no matter the cost) has grown through years of receiving His unconditional love, purging, and cleansing - right? That General has been blood-washed and secured in the knowledge that God will never leave him nor forsake him, and he knows very well what pleases the Father and what does not.
With that in mind, Abba will entrust to that General an immature Christian who's been hurt and wounded, who's angry and shows it, but who truly desires to learn and be healed. To say the least, that's a challenge for the young Christian AND for the General who God has asked to show forth the same enduring, forbearing, persevering love he is shown.
Mature Christians should realize such cases will constitute the majority of ministry to younger Christians and, certainly, to the lost; so it's up to us NOT to forget the "milk" - the simple, humble, biblical foundations of faith in Jesus Christ that tender us toward "newbie" frustrations, and enable us to love them unconditionally, as we are loved.
This powerful praise of the Gospel's benevolence always blesses me:
"The law says, 'Go!' The Gospel says, 'Come...'
The law says, 'Do!' The Gospel says, 'Done'."
To me, that means Jesus has already supplied everything needed to minister to that newbie through us, and to further grow us through Christ-like obedience. We don't have to rely on ourselves, because Jesus has done all the work required of us and them; we just have to draw on Him. Mature Christians, take heart and hang in there! In confirmed assignments from Abba, our only part is to show them His love in patience, obedience, endurance, forbearance, perseverance and - through all the inevitable processing - don't forget the "milk".
(Dear readers: You're welcomed to view a video supplement to this post featuring me and my best friend Lynette. To do so, just click here.)
"... fervent in spirit, serving the Lord."