Pastor’s ponderings

I was recently reading a short story about a young man who was approached by the manager of his prestigious place of work.  On this particular day, the manager informed him that they simply no longer had enough work to keep him employed and were going to have to let him go.  To this the boy responded, “Ah, but, sir, surely you have enough work to keep me hired.  You obviously don’t understand what a small amount of work it takes to keep me busy.”

            Initially, this can seem quite funny, for I am certain we have all known someone that can drag a task out for much longer than was really necessary.  For laborers paid by the hour, this would simply be known as “milking the clock.” The honest truth is that many of us (especially those that have managed, or had to pay, people like this young man) grow quite angry when we see someone doing such a thing, when we see them taking their time, dragging things out, simply for the sake of saying that they are a part of the organization, not because they truly want to be an effective worker for the organization which they represent.

            The unfortunate reality is, there are many “Christians” that are just like this young man.  They say that they want to follow Jesus, but when it really comes down to it, they aren’t disciples seeking to see how much they can do for Him, but how little they have to do to consider themselves as his follower.  This is the exact opposite of what Jesus said Christians would do.  Jesus said, “Very truly, I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father” (John 14:12, NRSV).  You “will do greater works.”  It’s not a request or a question, but a statement.  Jesus proclaims that all who believe in him will do so much more than he ever did, not because he makes them, but because they want to.

            I guess that’s why the author of the story of the working young man also noted, “Any who enters Christian service for the sake of having an easy time will be disappointed. Christ is a busy Commander of busy soldiers.”  Unlike that place of employment mentioned above, in the Kingdom there is much work to be done.  That is why Jesus told the seventy new disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore ask the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest” (Luke 10:2, NRSV). 

            Will you be sent out for the Lord today?  Will you commit to the hard work required of a true disciple of Jesus?  Or will you try to take the easy way out by doing as little as possible?  Therein is the test of our faith and definitely something for each of us to ponder.

                                                                        Pastor Steve

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