30 March 2016
Reading: Judges 8; Psalm 42; 1 Corinthians 15
So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless. (1 Corinthians 15:58 NLT)
Paul worked hard and enthusiastically for the Lord. He sacrificed much, suffered often, and served faithfully. He had accomplished much through his ministry, but the extent of his success in serving the Lord was never apparent in his lifetime as it is to us today.
There were lonely times in the night in jail cells, uncomfortable nights sleeping by the roadside on one of his many journeys, or desperate times clinging to the wreckage of a sinking ship, when the success and effectiveness of his ministry was hard to quantify.
Measuring the value, impact, or usefulness of a life, of a sacrifice, of one’s faithful service, by immediately observable, measurable evidence can seem discouraging at times. But Paul knew by revelation from the Lord himself that nothing he did for the Lord was wasted or useless.
You and I need to be assured sometimes, and reassured at other times, that nothing we do for the Lord is useless. I don’t always reach my goals, and I don’t always please those I’m serving or those I’m serving with. In fact, I don’t always please myself! It’s often hard to quantify my success and my successfulness by immediately observable and measurable evidence. Can you relate?
Here’s the assurance of God’s Spirit-inspired Word for you and me today:If we do it for the Lord, it is never useless!
Father, Thank you for your assuring and reassuring word from Paul. This morning I reaffirm that my service is to you and for you, and not for success or accomplishment or status, or for pleasing myself or others. I serve at the pleasure of my Father! I labor for you. I sacrifice for you. And nothing I do for you is ever useless! Amen.