Down in the Trenches
Down in the trenches of WWI, a young soldier writes, “You simply can have no idea what it is like to be in the trenches for days and weeks on end under enemy fire. Life means nothing here.” Yet this is exactly where God calls His servants to go.
As ministers of the Gospel of Christ, we choose to jump into the trenches of the wounded and hopeless, those fighting the battle of a lifetime. Perhaps we find ourselves hurdling from trench to trench in order to assist those who are bruised and broken by the enemy’s onslaught. At other times we are thrust into a battle we did not see coming. The trench is a nasty, dirty, dangerous, and discouraging place to be. You may say, “I don’t remember signing up for this! All I want to do is preach from a nice clean pulpit!”
“Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you” (1 Peter 4:12).
Jesus left heaven and descended willingly and lovingly into the dark sin-filled trench known as earth. I’m so glad He did, because He found and rescued me from the enemy. If He did that for me, can I not endeavor to extend that same grace to another? However, that doesn’t make it easy. It’s hard work, uncomfortable, time-consuming, exhausting, and painful. At times, we want to quit and walk away from it all.
The truth is you are never alone. This is not your battle; it is God’s, and He is with you in the trenches. He is the One who strengthens us when we can’t take another step. He never intends for us to do His work in our own strength. Lean into Him. Trust Him. Understand, this is war and the enemy’s assault on mankind will only increase, because he knows his time is short. “But where sin increased, grace increased all the more” (Romans 5:20).
Find your encouragement in the Word of God, for He is not through with you. He freely gives Himself and all He is to you so you can endure the rigors of the trench. He is your wisdom, peace and exceeding great joy (2 Cor. 7:4 KJV). Your permanent leave of duty will only happen when Jesus comes to take you home. And when He comes, may He find us in the trenches helping others know the Savior. “It will be good for that servant whose master finds him doing so when he returns” (Matthew 24:46).
“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9).
“And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:20).