Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Git er done!

In the dedication to his book The Reformed Pastor, Richard Baxter confesses that he procrastinated in starting the work of meeting with his congregants. He felt overwhelmed by the task at hand and figured the obstacles would too daunting to overcome. He writes,
I wonder at myself, how I was so long kept off from so clear and excellent a duty. But the case was with me, as I suppose it is with others. I was long convinced of it, but my apprehensions of the difficulties were too great, and my apprehensions of the duty too small, and so I was long hindered from the performance of it. I imagined the people would scorn it, and none but a few, who had least need, would submit to it, and I thought my strength would never go through with it, having so great burdens on me before; and thus I long delayed it, which I beseech the Lord of mercy to forgive.
It seems, not only did he find the difficulties loomed overly large, but the importance of the undertaking was undervalued. Fear of man also worked into the mix of the muddled musings of his mind. However, he went through with his plans and adds, "Whereas, upon trial, I find the difficulties almost nothing (save only through my extraordinary bodily weakness) to that which I imagined; and I find the benefits and comforts of the work to be such, that I would not wish I had forborne it, for all the riches in the world."

Once endeavored, the difficulties seemed small and the performance of the duty were beneficial and comforting. We need, I need, some gospel-initiative and gospel-ambition in my life to begin tasks I'm called to and to persevere in employments I have already begun.

In reading this passage, I was reminded of something Mark Dever said. I do not remember the exact quote, and cannot cite the source, but it was something to the effect of, "Young men over-estimate what they can accomplish in the short-term and under-estimate what they can accomplish in the long-term." That is another sound piece of advice.

To 'git er done', remember that if you have been called to something, the difficulties are never so great and the reward will exceed expectations. And hard work over a long period of time will pay off.

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