Thankful For Finishers

I'm thinking of finishers. Closers. Perseverance. 

The greatest baseball closer of all time is Mariano Rivera of the New York Yankees. When Rivera entered the game, it was 99% guaranteed the Yankees would win the game. In 18 years he had 608 saves. The closest is 309 saves.  

Every team needs a closer.

Football has quarterbacks who can close the deal in the 4th quarter of the game.
Soccer has the player who can score in the final minutes of the game.
Tennis has the player who can comeback when down and win the last set.

Closers. They are finishers. They are committed to not only win but to finish.

I think of pastors I have known in my 32 years as a Christian. Many pastors have failed to finish. Yet many have finished. There's a stat out there that says, "50% of pastors will be out of the ministry after 5 years in the church."

Yet I see many of my friends who could have fallen out of the ministry but have not. They are still in the race. Even after being fired, forced out, or burned out, I can name many pastors who were able to stick with vocational ministry callings.

One other alarming element is the Christians who fall out of church . They love Jesus but disconnect from the church. It becomes very optional for them. In part I understand why. When you have been hurt in church it stings. When that hurt happens again and then again, well I get it. People decided to check out on the hurt.

My point for pastors and people in the church is this: I'm thankful for those who find the capacity of grace to stay in the ministry. The stakes are high. The savior's command is still active. And the difference between mundane and mission can still be found. People are worth it. More, God our savior is worth our all.  

Finish.
Be a closer.
God is with us. 

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