Elected Officials

We Do Not Lose Heart


Quinton Cools October 12, 2018
Back to Blog

This post was written by TeenPact Student Body Representative Laura Gosz of Oklahoma.


 

“I’m so excited to go home!” I told my Rendezvous leader at a TeenPact event several years ago. My leader gave me a puzzled look…tonight was the last night of the event, and my statement clearly caught the sniffly group by surprise. I explained with a smile, “I have learned so much, and although I’m sad to leave this TeenPact week, I just can’t wait to go and live out everything I have learned!”

 

This is often my thought process as I go home from a TeenPact event. I have spent the most amazing week with a community of believers who take their faith seriously. I have seen and experienced the hand of God working clearly in my life. I have a fresh perspective on my God-given purpose as I head home to the different arenas of life where He has placed me. In short, I’m pumped.

 

But after spending a few days (or less) at home, my perspective begins to cloud again. Why isn’t living for Jesus as easy or exciting at home as it is at TeenPact? Is this really where God intends for me to be? Why can’t I see Him as clearly? I find myself longing for the next TeenPact event, until I remember: TeenPact is not an end, it is a tool that prepares me for a life dedicated to a far more glorious end…the glory of God.

 

This truly is what TeenPact is about. It is a place where God equips and encourages us to live boldly and unashamedly for the Name of Jesus. We get to experience deep, like-minded fellowship with other believers who are passionate about worshiping the Savior and pursuing His Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. And then God sends us home.

 

When it is time to leave these spiritually impactful weeks of tremendous growth and experience, God sends each one of us back to a uniquely designed situation in life to accomplish this task. You might find yourself heading home to your family, your youth group, your job, your school, your friend group, your sports team, etc. Where God has placed you is exactly where God wants you to be, and you can take so much joy and excitement in the rich purpose for which you are being sent!

 

But getting sent back out can be very difficult. I find myself battling so many weaknesses…distraction from the purpose I have received from Christ, fear of what living for Christ will require of me in my “comfort zone” of home and friends, frustration at what can seem like God not doing anything… The mundane begins to feel useless and unnecessary compared to the excitement I experience at TeenPact.

 

What happened to the thrilled anticipation of going home and living for Christ? Is His Presence less real here than at TeenPact? So often I fall prey to these weaknesses that continually try to steal my joy and take my eyes off the One who sent me to these hard places with His purpose. But God’s promises still remain.

 

His power is made perfect in our weaknesses, and He will never leave us or forsake us.

 

Of course, God knew we would need some encouragement. Two arenas of life that I recognize God has clearly placed me in right now are my family and my youth group, and I recently read a passage of Scripture that spoke to me so much as I struggled with the weaknesses of distraction, fear, and frustration. 2 Corinthians 4 verses 1 and 7 tell us, “Therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart…But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.”

 

When I read these verses, I let out one of those long, relieved, overwhelmed-at-God’s-kindness sighs. He knew it wasn’t going to be easy. Jesus knew that living boldly for the glory of God is hard. He knew it because He lived it. He knew I wouldn’t be able to do it in my own strength. But, if we are His children, then we know with full assurance that “the surpassing power belongs to God, and not to us.”

 

And therefore, we do not lose heart.

 

This truth changes the way I look at my life and the different places God has sent me. The spiritual fervor and reality of who God is that I experience so deeply at TeenPact is a powerful message that is meant to be shared, and regardless of how hard it is or where I am sent to accomplish this task, God’s power will always be made perfect in me when I surrender my weaknesses to Him!

 

When I am feeling afraid, frustrated, or distracted with my situation and longing to experience Jesus work like I see Him work at TeenPact, He tells me not to lose heart. God is just as real at home as He is at TeenPact, and it is because this is true that we are equipped and sent home with a purpose; we are sent out to let His power work in us to proclaim His gospel to those who don’t know Him, love those around us, speak truth into the lives of others, encourage one another, and lead others into a deeper worship and knowledge of who Jesus is.

 

This is why TeenPact exists: changing lives to change the world – letting the glory of God change our lives so that His power can work through us to change the world for HIS glory. And yes, it is hard. But He is with us always, “even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20)

 

He is with us whether we can visibly see Him at work or not. He is with us when we miss the community of believers we have at TeenPact. He is with us as we take steps to live boldly for Him in the different arenas of life He sends us to. He is with us as we seek to intentionally love our family and friends. He is with us when we struggle with weaknesses. He is with us when we recognize that the surpassing power belongs to God, and not to us.

 

And therefore, we do not lose heart.

 

I might have caught my Rendezvous group by surprise that night when I expressed my excitement to go home and live out loud for Jesus, but I hope that all of our hearts will never lose that same desire to be bold for the glory of God in whatever arena of life we are sent to. In our weakness, His power is put on display. The surpassing power belongs to God, and not to us. We are sent with a purpose…and that is just plain exciting. 🙂

 

 

Representative Laura Gosz

About the Author

Quinton Cools

Quinton Cools grew up in the Pacific Northwest, and like any true Oregonian, he can identify the perfect cup of coffee. He is the fifth of nine… Read More

2 Replies to “We Do Not Lose Heart”

Cassidy McCaslin on October 19, 2018 at 12:08 am

Thank you for the encouragement Laura!! Love you. ❤

Libby Hutchinson on October 20, 2018 at 11:00 pm

This is an amazing blog post! Exactly what I needed today

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *