Thursday, May 20, 2010

Do an easy thing.

Recently I saw a book written by the Harris brothers called Do Hard Things. I loved it. Well, I loved the title, I haven't read the book. The title, however, really resonated with me. After thinking about it, I would only add this: Do an easy thing.

When I was in college, anytime I thought about future career options, I only knew that I wanted to do something hard. I wanted something significant. I didn't want to do just any old job, but rather something that would challenge me, and allow me to challenge others. I enjoyed being around people with high standards, and gravitated towards those professors who really pushed me to excel.

Perhaps this is part of what drew me towards the ministry. Being in the ministry is nothing if not a challenge, and that aspect is alternately enjoyable and frustrating. I think that part of what makes ministry satisfying is the conviction that I am doing something significant for the Lord, that being in His service is an important and necessary place to be. I think this also speaks to why so many people find mission trips so rewarding, because we know that beneath it all we are not only serving others, but we are serving our Lord, and he is pleased with our obedience.

This is all good, and far be it from me to speak ill of mission trips, service, or obedience. But I am beginning to find in my own soul a particular occupational hazard that can affect anyone who serves regularly. It's easy to go from thinking that the Lord is pleased with my obedience (which he is), to thinking that he is now pleased with me because of my obedience. And this is a whole different thing.

You see, the gospel says that God is not happy with me because of how much I do for him, he's pleased with me because of what Christ has done for me. In fact, the requirement of the gospel is not the we serve God, but that we stop serving, and allow Christ to serve us! Remember how hard that was for Peter? To sit down and allow Jesus to do the work of washing his feet was unthinkable to him. And yet me must. We must sit down and allow Jesus to do all the work.

For some of us, particularly those with a sturdy work ethic and an inclination to get busy, this is difficult. But I believe this can be a salutary exercise, to occasionally sit down and stop serving. Just do an easy thing. And remember that God is still pleased with you, as he always is, only because of the work of Christ.

1 comment:

Ken said...

I just got a little less stressed... thanks.