Facing The Lesser Pain

December 6, 2006 — 10 Comments

I have trembled at the thought of dying by fire. Trapped in a room, suffocating, blinded, my blood literally boiling, slowly fading in a roaring inferno. I have closed my eyes in horror at the thought of being hung or choked to death, or slowly and painfully dying of some extreme pain. I have been shaken at the thought of dying a terrible and nightmarish death of sickness where I am alone, cold, and forgotten.

Forlorn, mournful, and somewhat depressed I begin to wonder if I would go through those things for the sake of Christ, or would I fall beneath the weight of my impending fear. Would I have the strength to endure agony, pain, and death for Christ? Could I make the ultimate sacrifice, glorying as Paul did in my sufferings?

The answer can only come when I am faced with such horrific situations
, but at some times I wonder about lesser pain. Am I willing to be laughed at, scorned, forgotten, left behind, and rejected because I overcame my fear of sharing Christ with everyone I met? How can I as a believer face the great physical pain without first standing up to the emotions of fear in my daily life here in America? As God’s Word tells us, we are given small things to be faithful in before we are given great things. We must be faithful in the small things, although they may seem so insignificant in the eternal spectrum.

I believe with all my heart that if, or when, the day comes that I am to choose life or death with the Gospel at stake, the Holy Spirit will empower me with His strength. I may not have the will now, yet I believe God is faithful and will provide.

I, like thousands of others, am willing to give my life for the gospel if it be God’s will. Yet I, like still thousands of others, fail to begin here in my hometown with reaching those who need Christ because of fear. How can I stand up to the fear of death when I cannot stand up to fear of rejection, where only my reputation is at stake? May the Holy Spirit’s fire return in our lives and to our nation.

Tim Sweetman


Tim Sweetman is a young writer, blogger, and student who lives near our nation’s capital, Washington D.C. He has been much more widely known by his “code-name,” Agent Tim. This name also served as the name of his popular blog, which received over 750,000 visits between 2005 to 2007. In 2005, he quickly rose to become a leading teenage spokesperson and cultural critic within the booming blogosphere, taking on issues such as MySpace, alcohol, homeschooling, pride, racism, tolerance, and other topics relating to our culture today. His blog has come to the attention of people such as Albert Mohler, C.J. Mahaney, Alex and Brett Harris, and La Shawn Barber. Tim’s written work has appeared in Lifeway’s Living With Teenagers (February 2012), Lookout Magazine, FUSION Magazine, The Brink Online, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, Virtue Magazine, Regenerate Our Culture Online Magazine, and on many other blogs and websites across the internet like Marry Well and the Lies Young Women Believe Blog. He has also been featured in WORLD Magazine, The Towers Magazine, and Maryland Newsline. He is scheduled to have an article appear in Veritas Magazine this December. Most recently, his work can be found on Focus on the Family’s Boundless Webzine. His personal interests include writing (surprise!) and sports, both watching and playing. He is a die-hard Washington Redskins fan.

10 responses to Facing The Lesser Pain

  1. amen! thanks Tim!!!!

  2. We often think in terms of dying for Christ like so many others have and wonder if we’d be able to stand strong until the end, but we aren’t truly willing to dye to self on a daily basis right now when, as you said, nothing but our reputaions is at stake. May our fear of men and pain be replaced by a fear of God.

    Grace for the moment,

  3. Wow, I wonder and had thought long and hard about the same things myself. Thanks for reminding us about God’s grace and supernatural strength when we are weak and can’t go on. Also, that we aren’t given more than we can handle but if we can’t handle small things, how can we handle big things. Good challenge. –fellowfollower

  4. Very thought-provoking. We actually had a lesson similar to this in Sunday School several weeks ago. Most of us (we pray) would be willing to die for Christ, but are really willing to actually LIVE for Him?… In all the little, seemingly “unimportant” aspects of each day… or in sharing the Gospel, where, like you said, only our reputations are at stake. It’s a sobering question, one we would all do well to take seriously, for it all begins with those “little” things. Good post, Tim. Way to put things in perspective.

  5. Amen, and amen.
    sometimes i wonder that if we did do all the little “hard things” that the perceived as “great” hard things would be easy, even simple.

  6. That’s certainly where I was heading as I fleshed out this article, Jaqui. It really is a profound thought, and once again helps us as we work to “hard things.” We need to understand that we must take on those small things that are really hard things before we take on the great things that most first think of when they hear of “hard things.”

  7. Amen! When I read your post I thought of the verse in John that says, “they loved the praise of men, more than the praise of God”. It’s so sad, and yet sometimes, I fear the same could be said of us. Our actions often show that we care about men’s opinion more than God’s commands.

  8. WOW! What a powerful post! Thanks Tim, it really challenged me.

  9. Great article! It is ridicule and rejection that we fear, yet God fully says that’s what we have to expect.

    Joh 15:20 Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.

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