Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Work Now Rest Later


Is there anything wrong with looking forward to heaven?  The short answer is that it is absolutely not wrong. That is our hope.  That is where we will spend eternity with our Lord.  That is the promise to those of us who are in Christ.  In fact, the Bible says that this earth is not even our home but just a place we are passing through acting as ambassadors of the Kingdom of Heaven.  Alright, that was not a very short answer at all.  However, there are a group of people where their only focus is on heaven.  I am not talking about always having heaven on our minds, but what I am talking is forgetting that we are here for a purpose. 
For to me, to live [is] Christ, and to die [is] gain. But if [I] live on in the flesh, this [will mean] fruit from [my] labor; yet what I shall choose I cannot tell. For I am hard-pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, [which is] far better. Nevertheless to remain in the flesh [is] more needful for you.  Philippians 1:21-24 NKJV
Yes, death for the Christian is gain.  Yes, heaven is our blessed hope and should always be what we are looking forward to.  Yes, heaven is our home and this world is not.  Where we are at now though is not some vacation from our heavenly home.  We are at work.  God has us here for a purpose and that purpose is in bringing more souls into the Kingdom of God.  True, we are not all professional evangelists, but we all play a part in making disciples of all the nations.   While we are in this world, God expects us to be profitable servants for the kingdom of God.  He expects us to be fruitful. 

Yesterday I talked about heaven as being our eternal vacation.  A vacation is a break from work.  Now is the time for work.  This is not like some earthly job where we punch in and punch out.  If we are alive and in Christ, we are punched in.  We do not punch out until we, well, punch out.  I do not understand the whole idea of putting on and off our faith like we do our work uniforms.  It is not a job we do to earn our living, it is who we are by what Jesus earned for us through His work on the cross.  There are no days off from being a Christian, there is not even a coffee break. 

Please keep this in mind as we go through our days. Look up to God, look forward to heaven, but look around for all that God has for us to do in the meantime.  There is much work to do, but we have the great benefit of not working in our own strength.  Jesus tells us that His burden is easy and His yoke is light.  This does not mean that the work to do is easy or light, it only means that the Lord bears those burdens for us and the world we do, we do is His strength. 
Then He said to them, "The harvest truly [is] great, but the laborers [are] few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest." Luke 10:2 NKJV

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