Ministry can be found to be extremely difficult and fiercely painful. I encourage each of you to hold on. Everything is all right. Life in the kingdom is that strange combination of painful and joyful reality.
We are assumed by the Creator to each have a personal cross. This tool of God's design is ours to make headway into the stressful land of treacherous caverns and mountainous terrain. And, we make it. Even though some die along the way, all contribute to the progress of the kingdom of God.
When we die, we must die well. It is to be noted Jesus emphasized no one would ambush him. He would intentionally lay down his life for others. Now the others, it must be remembered, were enemy others. The church is its most restored when it finds those few male and female soldiers who will stick with the plan and lay down and die that their enemies have opportunity to start life over.
I know it hurts you. Suffering hurts. I know you had hoped for smoother roads and fewer curves. But don't be discouraged with the harshness some seem to enjoy placing upon you. Rather, die to yourself for others well. If we are going to make progress in a nasty world of church ugliness, the only way we can function effectively is to keep marching forward with our crosses strapped across our backs.
Don't forget that enemies count. They are souls Jesus had in mind for us to save. Everybody is important to God. It could be that our communities are greatly suffering because the church gave up on the enemies.