How many people are enough?
“But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold.” (Matt. 13:8) Can you rejoice in your life if only one comes to the cross of Christ and repents, calling Him Lord and you a brother or sister in Christ, if that is all that comes to Him by your efforts and His grace for the entirety of your life?
There is a thirst that all who have been crucified with Christ know, not just the thirsting and hungering for righteousness from Matthew 5:6, but a great thirst to reach out to the lost, to bring to them the good news, to share the gospels in hope that they will repent and be saved from eternal damnation. It is our main focus, it is life to us to serve the Lord Jesus, and it is one respect the greatest blessing from Him aside from our own salvation, to be used for the glory of God by bringing a soul to the knowledge, and acceptance of His grace.
“By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.” (Heb. 11:4)
How many have been saved because of the words that the Holy Spirit wrote through Paul, John, Peter, how many from the words penned by H.A. Ironside, A.W. Tozer, Bernard of Clairvaux? We do not know all that will be saved because of the words that the Lord has allowed us to speak to those we meet, most of us are seed planters, so to speak, in this area, rarely are we blessed to be there at that moment when the angels rejoice over that one lost soul that has been found and justified. It does happen at times of course, and it is a thrill beyond compare, nothing is like it, but for many I believe it is rare, and because of that, a type of despondency can be formed within us, the feeling of being unprofitable for the Kingdom.
I knew a man of God many years ago, called to be a pastor, who for at least five years preached to a congregation of around four or five regular members in a rented building, He ended up in the hospital, nearly dying, for over seven months, and soon after he was healed, a wealthy man who had attended his Sunday morning service only once before, years ago, donated a large parcel of land to the church he led. Within two years there were well over a hundred people sitting regularly in the pews of a new structure.
We do not know, and we do not need to know.
If the Almighty has called you to serve in a particular manner, and you are sure by the testing of the Spirits (1 John 4:1) that you are performing the task that He has set before you, that is enough. But you must be sure.
No one can rest assured that they have been called by the Lord who preaches year after year to an empty church, there must be some type of proof offered, and I believe that the Lord always gives that proof. It may be only occasionally, and rarely at that, but He will offer it. Men and women of God know for a fact that they are serving God by visible, tangible proof, they are not swayed by their emotions in this area, they do not “feel” like they are serving, they know it.
The Lord is merciful in this area, but we must not only be careful, but patient, we need, as it were, to be needed, and for the one whose main desire it is to be useful to the Lord, without some form of acknowledgement from the Almighty, we will stumble around in the dark, we will despair.
“The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise.” (Prov. 11:30)
The question is, do you need to see that fruit, and if so, how often? We study to show ourselves approved for His glory, we seek for opportunities to share what we know to be the truth, we ask the Lord to use us, what we need to ask ourselves is this, do we need to see the fruits of our labors in this life?