Thursday, February 8, 2007

The Perfect Job (continued)

4> You may have discovered your ‘dream job’ , have completed your training and have all the qualifications …… but you have a handicap that prevents you from being hired ! Perhaps the job was your city's Building Inspector – but you are in a wheelchair and as a building inspector you would need to go where wheelchairs could not have access. Your disability prevents you from being able to do the job.

But what may be perceived as a handicap in the ‘upside down’ earthly kingdom is not a handicap in God’s kingdom at all !
Isn’t that what Paul learned when he struggled with his ‘thorn in the flesh’? He begged God to take it away so that he would be better qualified to serve Him. But God said, “No, I gave that to you because you need it to serve Me better !”
And Paul grasped the truth , “in weakness is God’s strength made perfect !” (II Cor.12:9)
Is there a physical handicap or circumstantial hindrance in your life that you feel is holding you back from serving God? Perhaps it is that very thing that qualifies you to fulfill the work God has given you to do!
I think of Joni Erickson- Tada . I remember when she had her accident and people around the world were praying for her healing. Everyone felt the pain of the girl who would never walk again, and begged God to be glorified through her miraculous healing. But God was glorified more in not healing her. If she had never broken her back and lived her life in a wheelchair… would any of us know her name? Is it not her handicap that has given her the opportunities to minister to so many people? I know that she would not change her "disability" , even if she could !!

5> You may have a job that is tedious , boring , repetitious and gives you no pleasure or satisfaction. I remember picking berries as a child - how I dreaded each morning and how long each day was especially when the weather was bad.
In God’s kingdom there is no dead-end job, no job that is worthless. No matter where you find yourself, in job or circumstance, God has a purpose , and a plan.
You may not see it…. but trust God and keep your eyes open. Where you are and what you are doing is important in the big picture and every detail is essential in God’s kingdom. He needs you exactly where you are !
When the early church was being established , slavery was still an accepted practice.
Imagine how a slave would feel… he has an opportunity to hear the gospel and his heart is drawn to accept Christ. Joyfully he receives salvation… but then I can imagine that joy dissipating as he realizes that he is trapped . He is a slave…he cannot be free to serve the Lord as others do - he cannot join those who eagerly go from house to house fellowshipping with one another and spreading the gospel on their travels from one city to another. But what does Paul say to these Christian slaves? He says, “Serve the Lord where He finds you. If you are a slave…consider yourself made free in the Lord and serve him by being the best slave that you can be.”(I Cor.7:20-24)
Perhaps someone who is a Christian has a job on a cruise ship… if he is helpful and pleasant in his job.. people will say , “well, who wouldn’t be happy in the job that he has.”
In contrast if someone has a job washing dishes in a steamy hot kitchen for a busy restaurant and this employee is always cheerful and willing to go the extra mile, people will be curious to know what makes this person so different from what they would expect.
No matter where you find yourself - be faithful… even in the little and He will reward you .

6> To be successful in the jobs of this world you often need resources …. a car, a computer, the right clothes, the tools of your trade. An electrician without his tools could not do his job no matter how much skill or knowledge he had. A pizza delivery boy needs to have a vehicle.

In God’s kingdom you already have all the tools or resources that are necessary for you to do the work assigned you.
One day a little boy begged to go up into the hills to listen to someone tell stories. His mother gave him permissions… but insisted that he take a lunch along… a few fish and some bread. The little boy ran off happily and sat enchanted by the stories the wonderful man was telling. After some time had passed, he realized that there seemed to be a problem and perhaps he overheard the disciples talking among themselves.
He offered his lunch to fix the problem. I’m sure the disciples were less than convinced that the little boy’s lunch would solve anything , but not wanting to hurt the little boy’s feelings they took his lunch to Jesus. But that little boy’s lunch was enough in Jesus’ hands to feed a multitude… with 12 baskets left over. I have a sense that everyone was amazed at the miracle…except the little boy. I imagine the little boy going home and his mother asking him if he had a good time… and did he eat his lunch. And he would have told her…”I gave my lunch to Jesus and He fed everybody with it “. And of course his mother would shake her head at her little boy’s overactive imagination.

We also have the story of Elijah , the great prophet of God, who prophesied that there would be no rain for three years. And Elijah himself was suffering - no harvest – no food. But God had a plan and he sent Elijah to Zarephath. There lived a poor widow woman with one son, who was at the end of her resources. In fact , when Elijah found her she was about to prepare the last bit of food that she had for herself and her son and then resign herself to death. This widow was a Gentile and I marvel at her willingness to give her last morsel of food to a foreign prophet. But she does… and we know the end of the story… her oil and flour kept replenishing themselves until the famine was over.
If she had been asked to serve the great God of Israel, she would have been incredulous, she had nothing with which to serve God …but God used what she had and we still read about her thousands of years later. God could have sent Elijah to some rich person who had stored up an abundance of food, but God delights in using the foolish, and the small so that the glory is all His.
So if you feel you have no resources, give Him the little you have and watch it multiply!

(concluded tomorrow)

1 comment:

Lovella said...

we have realized that though we feel inadequate, if we are serving in joy . . .there are blessings both for the server and the served.
Enjoy your site seeing today. :)