Call of Duty
Updated: Feb 16, 2020
And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. Colossians 3:23-24
Do you remember as a kid having duties to do around the house? I sure do. My brothers and I had daily assignments that were expected to be done before my mom got home from work. Sometimes we’d have to hurry to get finished but when my mom walked in the door you were to be found busy. Whether it was vacuuming the floor, washing the dishes or taking out the trash, we did what we were told to do whether we felt like it or not. We didn’t have an option. Immediate obedience was expected in our house. There was no debating back and forth and we'd better not “roll our eyes”, ‘huff and puff’, or delay. We knew who was in authority and out of love, respect, and reverence we did what we were told; with a few exceptions. For the most part we were compliant. Reluctant at times but still obedient.
Obedience to God is similar. When God is leading us to do something being reluctant can being an initial response. We might be afraid or even doubtful. You may feel inadequate or maybe you just downright don’t want to do it. Moses, Jonah and Jeremiah just to name a few had similar feelings. Regardless of how we feel obedience to God is a necessary component to our walk with God.
Doing what God has assigned for us to do is not always going to be comfortable. Sometimes we may ask,“Why me Lord?" There are many situations in life that can take us by surprise and change our lives as we’ve known it. These issues that we see as inconveniences can be burdensome and trying. They also may very well be what God will use to develop and bless us and at the same time use us to transforms lives for His glory.
Contrary to some popular beliefs, there will be some suffering in service. Yes, there will be times when in serving we will have those warm and fuzzy feelings. On the other hand, there are going to be times when we are hard pressed. Either way God is calling for us to be totally submitted and obedient. “For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps.” (1 Peter 2:21) Part of being a believer is the privilege of serving faithfully even when we encounter difficulties. I admit there have been times when I’ve given up when the going got hard when knowing in my heart I was supposed to stay on assignment. When we look at Christ’s example and how He remained faithful during trials and suffering we get insight on how we can endure. Jesus said in the gospel of John that He could do nothing of Himself. (John 5:19) Jesus relied on God for power, wisdom, insight and strength to do the work that He was sent to do. That same power lives in you if Jesus is Lord over your life. Christ living in you empowers you for service. All He requires of us is submission, faith, and obedience.
If sometimes you have feelings of sorrow and discouragement know that Jesus had these same feelings before going to the cross. “Then He said to them, “My soul is exceedingly sorrowful”, “He went a little further and fell on His face and prayed saying, “O Father, if it possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will.” (Matthew 26:38a 26:42) Jesus prayed to the Father three times that if possible the cup would pass from Him. This may have shown the depth of immense emotional suffering and impending physical suffering He would have to endure. But most importantly Jesus prayed, “Not as I will, but as You will.”
You may be in a situation now that you may wish that the cup would pass from you. You may have prayed more than three times. You might have feelings of discouragement, frustration, and even feelings that life isn’t fair. Though you have the bitter cup know that God is with you and He has the cup in hands. He has allowed you to be in this season for His purpose. He is developing you more into Christlikeness and further enabling you to live a life of selflessness.
Christ died that we may live. He had no other will but the Father’s. In like manner our wills must die. In doing this we honor Him with a life of blessing and blessing others.
When we lay down our lives for others we are reflecting God’s love and compassion. Above all we show our love for God through our obedience. Listening to God coupled with obedience empowers you to touch lives for Him. The lives you touch will have the imprint of Jesus. Although you may not see it now, never underestimate the power of God working through you to bring healing, salvation, hope, and deliverance to someone’s life.
Is there anything that you feel God tugging on your heart to do and you haven’t stepped out on yet? You’ve been doubting and tussling with your feelings or even making up excuses but deep down inside you know what it is that God wants you to do for Him. Is God burdening your heart in the middle of the night to get up and pray? What about that book that He’s placed on your heart? Maybe it’s even getting into fellowship with a body of believers? As of equal importance; what is God telling you to stop doing? In either case sluggish obedience is still disobedience.
Service to others leads to a life of fulfillment, blessing and peace with God. At the same time it also requires sacrifice. It’s a privilege and an honor to serve the Lord. The harvest is ripe and God has planted people in your vineyard who need Jesus. God just wants us to be available, faithful and obedient. You and I are the answer to someone’s prayer. Lives are depending on you and me. It’s literally a life or death situation.
I reflect back to my brothers and I trying to hurry and get our work done before my mom returned. Comparatively there is an urgency in this last hour and we have work to do before our Savior returns. May we be found faithful. “Blessed is the servant whom his master, when he comes, will find him so doing when he returns.” ~Jesus (Matthew 24:46)