As a result of pressure and excess stress that is faced in the ministry, statistics show that 50% of ordained ministers across denominational lines are out of the pulpit within 5 years. Here in the USA 1,500 pastors leave the ministry each and every month.
There are many Christians who also quit on God. The stress that comes with
unanswered prayers, financial strains, relationship issues, etc., gnaw away at our relationship with God and we are sometimes at the point where we want to throw in the towel. Have you felt like that?
To quit means to give up or resign; let go; relinquish
I remember during my seminary days there were at least three occasions when I almost quit due to some of these stressors.
The post-resurrection of Jesus provides an account of Peter who wanted to quit. In fact he did, but fortunately he was rescued from this. As we know of the account of his denial of Jesus despite his declaration of loyalty to Jesus.
In Matthew 28:7 the resurrected Lord had promised that he would meet up with the disciples in Galilee. They went to Galilee and waited and waited and waited.
What did Peter do. He decided to go fishing. He became impatient and went fishing. Now there was nothing wrong in him going fishing. However, it seems that he had this feeling of quitting. He was having one of those days when you feel so low, you feel like quitting. When he said, “I am going fishing”, the Greek word used to convey what Peter said was hupago (hoop-ag’-o), this is an interesting word that literally means “I retire.” Peter is ready to quit preaching and go back to what he knew best, fishing.
Peter was looking back, he tried to go back to his comfort zone. He began to think, “Hey if this ministry thing doesn’t work out I can always go back to where I left off.”
We may not know exactly what God has planned for our lives now. But you can bet that you will not want to miss it, and we will never know what his best was if we quit.
Notice what Jesus did in the life of Peter. Jesus made him a great leader – Matthew 16:18, “And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.
When you feel like quitting, reflect on Peter’s experience found in God’s Word.