My friend, may I ask you a question? Why do we so seldom allow those serendipitous invitations of calling into our lives? When you think about it my friend, how would God rather use us–as a child who is simply helpful or an adult who wants to help?
My friend, life's a story, welcome to This Passing Day. I'm Mark Brunner.
A funny thing about children that separates them so implicitly from adults is their willingness to be innocently used. On the one hand it’s a concern because we don’t want our children to trust strangers. On the other, however, the ability to allow themselves to be used can be admirable. Let me give you an example. Years ago I was remodeling the first home Holly and I bought after being married. We had rented for a few years and had our first daughter, Sarah. I believe Holly was expecting our second daughter Rachel at the time. During those months of working on the project every night, Sarah would often come up the stairs and watch me pound, drill, cut and push the 2 x 4s into place to form the dormer I was building. She would sit there on a pile of lumber, singing to herself and just watching. So, one evening I thought it would be good to put her to work. I told her to hold the end of a 2 x 4 that I was pulling a nail from. When I finished extracting the nail I told her she was doing a great job. She smiled and went back to her singing. I used her to do something I could have done myself, but it seemed good to me and she had no idea I using her serendipitously; she just liked being helpful.
If I had asked her that favor but 15 or 20 years later the result may not have been the same. I think that Sarah would have been far more conscious of her usefulness than did the little girl of 4. Such is one of the mixed blessings of growing up. We seldom allow those serendipitous invitations into our lives. When you think about it friend, how would God rather use us? As someone who wants to help or someone just being helpful?
Here’s a thought from Oswald Chambers: “Most of us live on the borders of consciousness — consciously serving, consciously devoted to God. All this is immature, it is not the real life yet. The mature stage is the life of a child which is never conscious; we become so abandoned to God that the consciousness of being used never enters in. When we are consciously being used as broken bread and poured-out wine, there is another stage to be reached, where all consciousness of ourselves and of what God is doing through us is eliminated. A saint is never consciously a saint; a saint is consciously dependent on God.” (My Utmost for His Highest, November 15)
In Chapter 22 of the Gospel of John we come across one of the more cryptic passages in Scripture. The Apostle Peter asks a simple question of the Savior–What about John? If we are all to suffer, what about him? “Jesus answered, ‘If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? You must follow me.’” Why did Jesus answer Peter so tersely? Was he ad-libbing, perhaps making a somber moment a bit lighter? Not likely. He was pressing home the fact that a disciple of Christ must answer the call to serve without trying to dig through the logic and compute the consequences. Jesus wanted Peter to forget about thinking it through or applying all manner of consequence to it. Simply, “Follow me.” There was nothing unkind in his response. He was asking Peter to hold the other end of the 2 x 4, nothing more. Too bad we all grow up so fast and make the calling to serve often a matter of deliberation. We ought to sing and watch as Sarah and just be ready to help at his calling. Importantly, though, we need to be ready to go back to singing again. There really is a bit of serendipity in every calling; too bad we are often so ready to help and so unable just to be helpful.
We pray. Heavenly Father, thank you for giving each and every one of us an on-call status when it comes to telling others about what Christ has done in our lives. Help us Lord to be less anxious to help and just willing to be helpful. Forgive us when we insert ourselves into the equation of service and ask too many questions for which the answers really aren’t any of our business at all. In Jesus name we pray. Amen!
Therefore my friend, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry for itself; each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matt 6:34) This Passing Day. May this passing day honor our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and be a blessing to you and everyone you meet. Find a stranger and say hello. Don't let another day pass without your day blessing someone else.
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