After serving as a church pastor for over 20 years, I have stars in my crown, as well as, scares on my back. I could go on rants of emotional exaggerations based on these years of victories and defeats, shame and joy, the perishable and the imperishable. Yadda, yadda, yadda. All that said (and that’s all I have to say about that), I read a verse this morning that spoke to me regarding yesterday and tomorrow in the Lord.
Therefore, my beloved, be steadfast, immovable, always excelling in the work of the Lord, because you know that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. – 1 Corinthians 15: 58
I shared this verse with April saying it brings me pleasure “that in the Lord” my work is not in vain. So often, I felt the work of the Lord was too hard.
She said two things. First, its exhausting; you can’t do enough to please. Second, when you fear being in circumstances of doing such work to please, and there’s anger associated with it, you erect walls between yourself and those who need the grace you carry. All of this is true.
I cannot be steadfast and immovable and looking to excel in the work of the Lord and remain grace filled if I’m quietly expecting people to be critical, looking for what only pleases them.
I will not expect critics and judges to warrant me strokes of appreciation when I think I’ve done what they expected. It’s not them. It’s me.
It thrills me so to know that in the Lord my labor is not in vain. Alleluia.
God is steadfast in his love for all. I will be steadfast and immovable in the Lord’s work through me. He does the work. I will continue to love, believe and hope as he carries the weight, and his kingdom comes to earth. Amen.