Do you get tired? Discouraged? Bummed out? Who doesn't?
All Christians do sometimes. My childhood pastor always gave us the following scripture as a benediction
"Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord".
- 1 Corinthians 15:58
My beloved brethren
. The Apostle Paul addresses us as family-- brothers and sisters. Christians are part of a family that cares deeply for one another. The church is the living example of that caring love. And though we sometimes feel alone, we belong to the family of God.
Be ye steadfast
, that is, don't always be moving around. "Be steadfast" means "be stable," "be firm." The Greek word alludes to sitting in a chair rather than pacing around--"fixed."
, means "not to be moved from its place." Perhaps people have called you "stubborn." Now you can be stubbornly opposed to God's will. That's bad. But you can be stubbornly devoted to God, so that circumstances and people don't distract you from Him. That's good. Call it persistent, call it faithful.
in the work of the Lord. The word translated "abounding" is defined as "exceeding a fixed number or measure," "over-and- above." Some people do what is expected. Others, out of love, go far beyond that. Their lives pour out and overflow. "Doing what?" you ask.
The work of the Lord
, is the answer. Work? "Not a good word," you say. "I work five or six days a week. When I get home I just want to rest." That's understandable.
Do you have any slackers at work? You know, people who only do the minimum, and only that if the boss is looking over their shoulder. And who takes up the slack? You or someone else. God's work is the same way. Just a few of the ways we do His work, build His kingdom here on earth, is to teach our children about Jesus at home and at Sunday school. We serve as an usher or teacher on Sundays. We encourage those believers who are down. We make a meal for a family when someone is sick. A church is a caring body. But when loafers don't pull their part of the load, it falls on others to do.
FCN Family, this is a word for you: be "
always abounding in the work of the Lord
." Always. Above and Beyond.
Knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord
Some people hate washing dishes because more dirty dishes magically appear overnight. Sweeping and vacuuming are the same way. Things never stay clean. Someone is always tracking dirt on your carpet. Is there no end? You get discouraged. It's only when you consider the alternatives that you get out your Hoover vacuum cleaner and sweep it all over again.
Your wife may not keep track of how often you change the spark plugs. Your husband has no idea of how often you dust. But God keeps track of our faithfulness in His work. He sees us serving Him when no one else sees. And seeing us hanging in there brings joy to his heart. Our Christian service is not done in vain for three reasons:
1. Christ's kingdom is built on your service, stone upon stone, act of kindness upon teaching the kids, serving refreshments upon spending time with a grief-stricken believer.
2. Seeing your faithful service brings joy to God's heart.
3. God will reward you for your faithfulness, even when no one else sees. His ledger book gets fresh notations every time you serve Him. In a word, your labor is not in vain in the Lord.
I get discouraged and so do you. But God keeps bringing us back to this verse to buck us up and help us to see the importance of faithful service. Don't give up. Your labor in Christ is not in vain.
FCN Family, you are all precious in the sight of God and most definitely precious in the sight of your pastor. Church Family, I love partnering with all y'all as we help build God's Kingdom together. Stay Blessed \o/
Lifting you and Loving you,