Word of the Month

For the New Year

January 2007

My dear brothers and sisters,

As this New Year begins I express my heartfelt best wishes for the time ahead. At the same time I thank you for your love and loyalty. May our heavenly Father reward you richly for everything you have done in love for His work!

As we look ahead I would like to reinforce the counsel that Apostle Paul once gave the Thessalonians: “Do not grow weary in doing good.” In the Luther translation it says “do not grow frustrated”, which makes us sit up and take notice. In other words, there is the danger of growing frustrated. In everyday life one can be frustrated to the point of growing weary. People, for example, are frustrated with politics. There is a certain resignation resulting from the realisation that as an individual one hardly has any influence. This leads people to withdraw in the thought: “The people up there simply do as they please!”

Frustration could also arise in our life of faith. We might have the impression that the Lord is doing nothing to intervene in our lives. One year follows the other and nothing changes. If none of our testifying efforts meet with success we might grow frustrated. Frustration might even arise if our prayers, our innermost pleas, are not fulfilled. I call upon all of us:

Let us not grow frustrated and weary!

How can we protect ourselves against frustration? Here is my advice: Let us continually give new impulses to our life of faith! I will endeavour also in the New Year not to grow frustrated and weary but to lead you joyfully.

With heartfelt greetings I remain

Yours,

Wilhelm Leber