“If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides,” -1 Peter 4:11b (NIV)
A happy army is a well-fed army. The success or failure of a military campaign can often rest on whether the soldiers fighting the battle have food to eat. For this reason the wise army makes sure that when they are in a protracted campaign that their supply lines are not stretched too thin and that these lines are adequately protected. Failure to do so could give the enemy the opportunity to strike at these vital lifelines; thereby depriving their opponent of needed food and supplies. Regardless of their training or skill as warriors, a solider cannot fight if he has not eaten. Starved and yet forced into battle, he cannot fight effectively for his strength is drained and thus he becomes easy prey for his enemy.
Sometimes we think that we can love and serve like Christ relying solely on our own strength. However, people and situations will come along our path that will challenge this claim. We soon come to face the reality that our love and generosity has its limits. It is no wonder then that we are prone to discouragement and frustration. We are like soldiers who are without food; fighting to love and serve others but only becoming weaker and demoralized with each step. It is for this reason that we need to keep our supply lines open by drawing from the strength which comes from God. When we have allowed Christ to enter our hearts and seek to abide in Him, He will give us a hunger to spend time in His presence and in His Word. With this spiritual food, God will replenish and strengthen us so that He may fulfil His great purposes through us. When we disconnect ourselves from the true source of strength, it will reflect in our service and love for others. But when we seek to be rooted in Christ He will enable us to love and serve as He did, with a tenacity and gentleness that will draw people to the hope which is only available through Him.
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.