“Dear brothers and sisters, be firm. Do not be moved! Always be outstanding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.
… to the extent that God has blessed you.
… because a door of great opportunity stands wide open for me, but there are many opponents.
Stay alert, stand firm in the faith show courage, be strong. Everything you do should be done in love.”
Last week I finished reading 1 Corinthians. The quotes above come from 15:58, 16:2, 9, 13-14, all quoted in the NET.
Before I go any further, please understand that I’ve not quoted the verses in their entirety, not even entirely in context. (Click here to read the full chapters.) In order to fully study and understand Scripture, we MUST read it in context, both literary and cultural.
Sometimes, though, God seems to highlight sections of Scripture. He makes them brighter for individuals for specific reasons. The parts I quoted above are the portions that jumped off the page at me last week.
Zach’s care (since his accident) has completely consumed me. I’m not complaining. Please understand that. But I have been overwhelmed, overwhelmed to the point that I sometimes just go through the motions knowing that I have so much to do and I don’t keep moving I won’t get it all done. Believing — or perhaps fearing — that if I take time to process our situation or my feelings about it or the toll it is taking on us, I’ll miss something. The balls I’ve so carefully arranged into moving suspension will tumble to the ground.
I’m surviving, but I’m not thriving. As a daughter of our great and mighty King, I have been called to something vastly more wonderful than mere survival.
I want to be outstanding in the work of the Lord … even through this.
I want to be outstanding to the extent that He has blessed me … and I have been blessed excessively.
I want to seize the great opportunity that stands wide before me … even if I don’t yet know what that is.
As I read these Scriptures and pondered what God desires for me to learn through them, I wondered what my future holds. Is He preparing me for something bigger?
A greater test to come? More struggles for our family? An opportunity to help or care for handicapped children?
I gotta be honest: this terrifies me. I don’t even want to verbalize exactly what whispers have ricocheted around my brain. I’m selfish and I kind of like being selfish.
But I know God has made me and saved me for something greater than myself. And how foolish would it be for me to forfeit something amazing simply because of fear? Or pride? Or comfort?
My Prayer: Lord God, help me to be selfless. Help me to seek you always and with abandon. For I know You are beyond worthy of my trust and my faith. You know all things and see all things and Your love for me exceeds anything I can possibly imagine. Help me to excel at the work You have given me and help me not to fear whatever work may be ahead of me. For Your glory.
Your Turn: What has God “highlighted” for you recently? Tell me how you maintain courage in the face of frightening opportunities. How do move beyond surviving to truly thriving?