Saturday, April 15, 2017

Day 118: Work to Be Done

Day 118
Joshua 13-15; 1 Corinthians 2

We get tired of the work before us at times. We may feel old, or sick, or just simply drained of life because of the things we're doing for the cause of Christ. We may feel inadequate and like we're not ready, so the work should go to someone else. We may just need a kick in the pants to remind us of Who we are looking to and Who we are working for. Today, let's consider these concepts of continual work for the Lord.

Joshua was getting older, and there was still much to be done. There was tedious work to be done in dividing the land among the people of Israel and even more fights to be won. Even in old age, God still uses you to complete His work. I think we go through seasons of life where we feel like we just can't continue in ministry (if you're a Christian, you are in ministry). It can be tough when you are in ill health or feel inadequate, but God will still use you in some capacity to carry out what He needs done to bless those around you. Simply sharing your story and reflecting with others is a big part of sharing the love God has for us with others.

Caleb's faithfulness this far to the Lord paid off. Caleb wasn't faithful for his own benefit, but because he believed in the mission God had called him to. Joshua was the same, and God rewarded both of them by delivering them to the Promised Land. Joshua even fulfilled a promise to Caleb in granting him his share of land 45 years from the time God promise it to him through the Lord. These men were sold out, faithful to God and they showed it, no matter how old they became and how old the promises became. Can you honestly say that you are still willing to do ministry, even if it does become tedious and hard, until your last breath?

On the flip side, our lack of maturity can keep us from truly doing the work Christ called us to. In 1 Corinthians, we read about how the people stumbled on leadership agreements, jealousy, quarreling, disunity, and deception. They are tripping over the wisdom of the world rather than wisdom of the Lord. Yet, there is much work to be done that requires God's wisdom, unity, camaraderie, and knowing Who gets the glory. It's God, every time - in case you didn't know. Stop stumbling and do some work for the Lord. Stop looking at the people around you, judging them, comparing yourself to them, and start looking up and comparing yourself to Him. There is work to be done.

Today, I want to leave you with this poem by Jill Briscoe:
Shaken, drained, discouraged, sickly
Tired and troubled and depressed, 
Glad the time of serving over,
Now I’ll go home and rest.
Hot and humid was the weather
Sad and needy was the crowd, 
Feeling I had done my duty,
Earned the time of rest allowed. 
Soon I could return to family
"Yes," tomorrow I’d be gone, 
Sitting in the last hot meeting,
I tuned in to what went on.
Listened to my husband preaching,
My, it was a great last talk, 
All about the call of Jesus,
All about our life’s “faith walk.” 
Stuart opened up the Scriptures
Talked of Jesus’ pain and loss, 
How He who was our great sin bearer,
Bore our guilt upon His cross.
What a great word for the students!
Hoped “they’d” listened, yield their hearts, 
They were young, their lives before them,
Now their turn to do their part.
Time for prayers of dedication,
I was tired, so late at night,
Shut my eyes and wished it over,
When a picture sprang to sight!
Saw a cross alone, discarded
Lain at rest against a wall, 
Who’d lain down such holy symbol?
Who’d abandoned life’s “faith call”? 
Then a voice so dear – familiar,
Asked a question – pierced me through, 
Who is it that you’re expecting
Carrying it home for you?
How could I lay down that crossbeam?
How to think that no one saw? 
Who did I expect to lift it,
Carry it to heaven’s door? 
"Jesus, Jesus, please forgive me,
Carried Thou your cross for me, 
All the way to hell to save us,
Help me carry mine for Thee!"
"I’m no hero – special woman
Just a lady, old and gray, 
But my cross, Lord, I will carry,
Home, Lord, home, Lord – ALL THE WAY!"
Spoke His voice so quiet – but clearly then:
"All the way home, Jill; all the way, all the way home!"
Jill Briscoe © 2012 

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