A retired minister was reviewing his many years in the ministry and commented: “I haven’t run as fast as some have run. I haven’t run as far as some have run. But, I have always stayed on track”
It is human nature to compare our work and our accomplishments with the work and accomplishments of other people. If we have not done as well as they have done, it is easy to become discouraged and feel we have failed. And the devil loves it. However, if we have seemingly been a little more successful in some endeavor than others, Satan does all in his power to tempt us to overlook the fact that what we accomplish was because of God’s blessings. When we do, he loves it. Have you been making your arch enemy happy? I have on more occasions than I’d like to admit. Shouldn’t we be aiming at making the Lord happy?
All of us who labor for the Lord, clergy and laity, will not be rewarded according to our successes. We will be rewarded for our faithfulness. We will be rewarded for becoming the best kind of servant we are capable of becoming. We will be rewarded for doing the best work for God we are capable of doing. Nothing is more important than for us to stay on track. But remember that apart from God all our accomplishments are as “nothing” to Him [John 15:5]. So God is looking for someone who will let Him accomplish and do what He wants in the person’s life.
God doesn’t grade us according to how we measure up to others. He gives different natural abilities and different spiritual gifts to each Christian, because He has different plans for each of our lives. It would be foolish for me to try and build my life according God’s blue print for your life. I don’t have the resources to be you and you don’t have the resources to be me. God will however measure my life against His one-of-a-kind blueprint for my life. Is your life, in the midst of construction, behind God’s schedule, or is it on track? Paul tells us in Philippians 1:6 “that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus”. God is seeking to build His intended masterpiece of your life. Are you working with Him or against Him? Looking anywhere but to the Great Architect will certainly produce a marred edifice. Men loved the Tower of Babel. It exceeded anything man had been able to build thus far. In fact the devil loved it because it was not on track with God’s will. It was a big success, but a total failure in God’s eyes.
I remember a fairly uneducated man in a former church. He bordered on being totally illiterate. There wasn’t much in the area of ministry through the church that he could be counted on to do. BUT he loved the Lord with all his heart. He had a great big smile. We asked him to do two things 1) to greet people as they arrived at church [constantly I heard back from our guests how they felt loved by this man] 2) to ring the bell ending Sunday School [he faithfully for all my years as pastor did that every Sunday – not a minute too early or a minute too late]. I honestly believe that my brother will receive more rewards in heaven than most of the deacons in that church and maybe even this pastor. Why? Compared to our public exploits, what he did wasn’t that fantastic. But He sought to serve the Lord with all he had. And I don’t think the devil was pleased.
Being a dedicated Christian and staying in line with the guidelines God has provided in His Word is a greater accomplishment and definitely more important than all of the successes we may claim.
We need to remember that God does want us to run as fast as we can; but He requires no more. He does want us to run as far as we can; but He doesn’t require us to run farther. Above all, He wants us to stay on track. If we do, I believe He will consider us successful servants and He will love it.
With His help and Your prayers,
I hope to stay on track,