Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. – 1 Corinthians 15:58 ESV
What are you doing for God? I reached out to a graduate of my Leadership Training, after finding out that she had broken up with her boyfriend. I knew a little information, based on some counseling I had done, and wanted to make sure she was doing ok emotionally with the breakup. I had nothing planned to say to her, but when she got on the phone she was good, and was ready to move on from this “relationship”. I encouraged her, and told her that I felt this was a good thing. The next thing that came out of my mouth was interesting, I funneled Paul the Apostle in 1 Corinthians 7: “So I say to those who aren’t married and to widows—it’s better to stay unmarried, just as I am… Because of the present crisis, I think it is best to remain as you are… But let me say this, dear brothers, and sisters: The time that remains is very short… I want you to be free from the concerns of this life. An unmarried man can spend his time doing the Lord’s work and thinking how to please him. But a married man has to think about his earthly responsibilities and how to please his wife. His interests are divided. In the same way, a woman who is no longer married or has never been married can be devoted to the Lord and holy in body and in spirit. But a married woman has to think about her earthly responsibilities and how to please her husband. I am saying this for your benefit, not to place restrictions on you. I want you to do whatever will help you serve the Lord best, with as few distractions as possible. (v 8,26,29,32-35) Then I said these words, “What are you doing for God?”. I know what you are doing for your future, and for your friends and for fun. But what are you doing for God? It was quiet, and we were not on the phone long.
Leader, we have all heard it preached, “You’ll never see a U-Haul behind a hearse.” We take nothing with us when we die, EXCEPT, what we did for God, because of God, to the glory of God, to the sacrifice of God, IN THE NAME OF GOD. No one brings material wealth into eternity. Heaven and hell do not have banks, or personally purchased goods. What we possess won’t change our circumstances for the better when we die, although it could have caused hinderances. Jesus warned us about this when He said, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal …” (Matthew 6:19-20). Since our stuff stays here, what treasure will we have in heaven? The Worlds economy and God’s economy, like everything else, is much different. Our time on Earth is temporary, and we are all headed to eternity somewhere. We can make the most of everything now and prepare for an eternity with God later by listening to Jesus and following His example. Jesus was always about the Fathers business. From an early age, He knew His purpose to be incarnate was to be about His Fathers business! In the 2nd Chapter of Luke’s Gospel (Luke 2:41-52), Jesus was left in Jerusalem during the Passover and Joseph and Mary had to go back and find Him. When they found Jesus 3 days later His response was precious. And He said to them, “Why did you seek Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?” What about you? Are you about your business, your fame, your vacation, your legacy- what are you doing for God?
Conduit, Jesus is to be our FIRST LOVE. In other words, we are to treasure the Lord Jesus most of all. When Jesus is our treasure, we will commit our resources—our money, our time, our talents—to His work in this world. Our motivation for what we do is important (1 Corinthians 10:31). Paul encourages servants that God has an eternal reward for those who are motivated to serve Christ: “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving” (Colossians 3:23–24). When we live sacrificially for Jesus’ sake, we store up treasure in heaven. Jesus’ half brother James is clear; Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you. (James 1:27) Even seemingly small acts of service do not go unnoticed by God. “If anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward” (Matthew 10:42). The story about the Rich young ruler illustrates this perfectly. The rich young did much for himself, but what did he do for God? We all learned that he loved his money more than God in Matthew 19:16–30. The issue was not that the young man was rich but that he “treasured” his riches and did not “treasure” what he could have in Christ. Jesus told the man to sell his possessions and give to the poor, “and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me” (verse 21). The young man left Jesus sad, because he was very rich. He chose this world’s treasure and did not layup treasure in heaven. God’s economy= God’s people, using God’s resources, for God’s people, for God’s glory. To the wealthy church of Laodicea, Hear the Word of the Lord, So I advise you to buy gold from me—gold that has been purified by fire. Then you will be rich. Also buy white garments from me so you will not be shamed by your nakedness, and ointment for your eyes so you will be able to see. I correct and discipline everyone I love. So be diligent and turn from your indifference. (Revelation 3:18-19) We must turn from our indifference and be about the Father’s business. So many are in need, so many are without and yet so many are too wrapped up in their kingdom and their work, and their savings and their vacations and their 401K, and could care less about so many without! So many do not believe that Jesus is returning soon, so they are about their own personal wealth and kingdom and not the Kingdom of God. Today is the day to repent and turn back to God. It is all His, to be used for His Kingdom, not yours. The Lord is coming for His church soon, people GET READY!