What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, â€œGo, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,â€ but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself,if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. James 2:14-17 (NIV)
I was up late last night. Some days are like that, aren’t they? I was really tired. But last night was an opportunity from God for me to put faith and works together. A friend has had a death in the family. God has given me a tender heart for those who are grieving. Most of the time I send notes, handwritten, emails, cards. God wakes me in the middle of the night with words to pass along. But this time, God told me to cook something. And so I was up late last night…cooking.
Whether it is reaching out to someone who is grieving or answering God’s tap on the shoulder to bless someone standing at an intersection with a sign, it is such a tremendous feeling to answer obediently and such emptiness when I ignore the call or find reasons why I can not do it. A lost opportunity is just that…gone. Too often, I try to analyze or weigh the pros and cons of an opportunity. Is it worth my time? No, I cannot do everything but if I am seeking God’s direction in each day then He will make it clear what I am to do and provide the means for me to do it. It is not about how big the task. It is about obedience to do what God asks. Something as tiny and simple as reaching a bottle of juice for a man in the grocery store who is in a wheel chair can make a statement from God to that man â€“ and have life-changing consequences. I don’t know. I don’t need to know.
In my prayer time, I want to spend more time being changed and molded and less time expressing the â€œGimme…â€ in too many ways! Jesus wanted me to have an abundant life. Jesus spent His ministry showing me how to serve. Do you think there may be a connection between an abundant life and serving??!!! Again, serving may be action that involves vigorous exercise or it may be writing a check. It may be prayer. I know no missionaries that need only money or only volunteers or only prayer partners. They need them all so they may fulfill the vision God has given them!
â€œ…the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves.â€ Luke 22:26-27 (NIV)
Open my eyes and heart, Lord, to hear and see the opportunities You send my way. I want to serve as You serve. I want to be Your invisible servant, Lord. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.