“Do thy diligence to come shortly unto me: For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus unto Dalmatia. Only Luke is with me. Take Mark, and bring him with thee: for he is profitable to me for the ministry.”II Timothy 4:9-11
I was in high school and started speaking with an ex-girlfriend, and we had plans to reunite our relationship. We were starting to speak so often that I would say we were practically “going steady”. At the same time, I was friends with another girl who thought we were an item, although I was convinced we were not. I took her out to the movies and her brother accompanied us to the movies. I honestly thought we were going as friends, so I had no problem with him going with us although he was an added expense. After the movie she thought we were an item although I perceived this after the fact. I thought I gave her no indication of such as I was friendly towards her because she was my friend but nothing more than that. She would call me often and even mailed me a Valentine’s Day card which I then figured out that she liked me. I was naive to girls liking me, as this was not an ordinary occurrence in my high school life.
I told the girl I liked about all of this, and she instantly became jealous. I should have thought about it a little more knowing that they attended the same school. One time, the other girl called me, and I told her I was grounded and could not talk on the phone as I did not want to talk to her. I lied about being grounded and foolishly shared this with the girl I liked as was semi-dating. As you can imagine, it did not take long before the girl I liked told the other girl that I lied to her. The girl I did not like called me that night, and really chewed me out for lying and being a jerk. I tried to keep to my story, but she knew it was a lie. I had messed up in lying, but I was so angry at the girl I liked. I felt she betrayed my trust, and I instantly broke things off with her. I thought how could someone that liked me reveal my secrets and lies? I didn’t feel that I could trust her anymore, and I chose to go my separate way but in reality, it was all my own fault.
I think of times in life when I betrayed my Savior. I think of the time I covered an Awana sticker with duct tape because it stated, “Christ for boys and girls.” I think of the times I wandered from the faith and forsook the God I said I loved. I think of the times I lied to myself about my relationship with God, and the times I betrayed him with my love for this present world. I think of the times I laid aside His love letter to me for the sports page or for some extra sleep. I hated when others betrayed me, but I thought nothing of betraying my God for the pleasures of this present world. I was not profitable to the work of God, and my testimony did not point others to Christ.
Where are you today friend? Are you living the life of Demas who had forsook the call of God for the pleasure of this world, or are you living the life of Mark? We either are profitable for the ministry or we are unprofitable. There is no middle ground as God hates lukewarm Christians. Will you betray the One who died for you for the one who seeks to destroy you? May we be found profitable for His sake and may we be found busy doing His work. Let’s be a stepping stone to God and not a stumbling block to Him.