Adapt and Overcome

The United States Marine Corps has a slogan, “Adapt and Overcome.”   At the heart of this slogan is a deep commitment to our nation and mission accomplishment.  This means that every Marine has to adapt and overcome. In essence, they have to give everything they are and everything they have in critical and dangerous situations to complete their mission. They don’t change their mission to fit their situation. Moreover, they don’t change their mission to accommodate their dreams and aspirations. They don’t even change their mission to accommodate their own personal safety. So, what about you? Are you working toward completing mission?  You, as well, must learn to adapt and overcome. 
Every Christian has special orders from the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to “go and make disciples of every nation.” Yes, that’s right, this is our mission. In fact, it is a personal order that can’t be delegated. Even though everyone’s specific role and style are different, we all have the privilege of this grand assignment. Similar to a Marine who finds himself in a very difficult situation, we have to adapt and overcome in a variety of circumstances to carry out the Great Commission of Jesus. Whether we experience persecution, health issues, difficult family circumstances, tough occupational challenges, perplexing working conditions or a busy schedule the mission remains the same. So let’s get real. We can’t change the mission to fit our particular situation. Likewise, we can’t change the mission to accommodate our dreams and aspirations. We can’t even change the mission to accommodate our own personal safety.
As I read the statistics about the decline of the local church in America, it seems that a large number of Christians have either ignored or abandoned the Great Commission. At the very least, they’ve “pulled rank” on God and changed the mission to meet their circumstances. Obviously, many have even delegated the responsibility to the pastor and a handful of other willing people. On the one hand, as Solomon reminds us, “there is a time for everything under the sun,” so there is time for work, vacation, family reunions and leisure.  After all, even a good Marine takes vacation and finds time to spend with his family. There is also time under the sun for worship, small group, fellowship and making disciples. But, on the other hand, the mission can’t be compromised whether it’s serving in the Marine Corps or following Jesus as one of His disciples. The mission must be accomplished regardless of the circumstances.  So what do we do?  We adapt and overcome.
A faithful Marine will always take the time to understand his mission. He will also train in preparation. So much so that it’s obvious that He is devoted to it and willing to give his life for its completion. Why? He loves his country and will fight to the death for its freedom. With that in mind, what is a faithful Christian? Isn’t the answer found in our love and devotion to Jesus Christ? After all, a person who says they love Jesus will demonstrate their love by obedience to Him (ref. John 14:15).  Of course, this means a faithful Christian will adapt and overcome in every circumstance and situation to carry out the mission.  Why?  Because she loves Jesus. See you on the battle field my friends!
A Work in Progress,
Pastor Gene

Gene StocktonComment