Summary: There is much work to be done in God’s Kingdom. There is a place for every Christian to serve.
Matthew 9:35-38 (GWT)
35Jesus went to all the towns and villages. He taught in the synagogues and spread the Good News of the kingdom. He also cured every disease and sickness.
36When he saw the crowds, he felt sorry for them. They were troubled and helpless like sheep without a shepherd. 37Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is large, but the workers are few. 38So ask the Lord who gives this harvest to send workers to harvest his crops.”
When Martin Luther became convinced that the biblical way of salvation was by God’s grace working through man’s faith in His Son, Jesus Christ, he began earnestly preaching and contending for this doctrine that became the hallmark of the Protestant Reformation. A friend of his was equally convinced of this truth, and the two men agreed that Luther would spend his time out in the world preaching, writing, and debating, while the friend would spend his time alone in a monastery upholding Luther and the cause of the Reformation in prayer. As Luther visited the friend from time to time and reported the difficulties and obstacles of the work, the friend would intensify his praying. One night the friend had a dream in which he saw a gigantic field that stretched over the whole earth. But only one lone figure was working in the field, and when he looked closer the man saw that the lone figure was his dear friend Luther. When he woke up he immediately went to find Luther and tell him that God made clear to him through the dream that it was not enough simply to pray. He, too, must give himself directly to the work of spreading the good news of salvation. He did not forsake praying, but he set aside his pious solitude and began to labor beside Luther in the heat and dirt of battle.
Martin Luther’s friend learned that God had a place for him in ministry. God has a place for you too. God is calling you. God has shaped you for a purpose. Are you ready to answer God’s call? Are you ready to get busy living God’s plan for your life? What’s holding you back?
We have many excuses we use. Some of our excuses are pretty clever.
Lawyer and statesman Daniel Webster was a powerful orator who gave early evidence of his quick mind and way with words. One day Webster’s father, who was to be absent from home, left Daniel and his brother Ezekiel specific work instructions. But on his return he found the task still undone, and questioned his sons about their idleness. "What have you been doing, Ezekiel?" he asked. "Nothing, sir." "Well, Daniel, what have you been doing?" "Helping Zeke, sir."
Today in the Word, September 19, 1992.
Did you know that none of your excuses are valid. God has heard them all.
God has Heard Our Excuses
“I am too young.” Jeremiah (1:4-9)
4Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying:
5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you;
Before you were born I sanctified you;
I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”
6Then said I:
“Ah, Lord GOD!
Behold, I cannot speak, for I am a youth.”
7But the LORD said to me:
“Do not say, ‘I am a youth,’
For you shall go to all to whom I send you,
And whatever I command you, you shall speak.
8 Do not be afraid of their faces,
For I am with you to deliver you,” says the LORD.
9Then the LORD put forth His hand and touched my mouth, and the LORD said to me:
“Behold, I have put My words in your mouth.
(New King James Version)
Jeremiah thought he was too young to speak for God. He was afraid people wouldn’t listen because he was a youth.
He was right, you know. As adults, we tend not to listen to those younger than we are, especially if they’re still in their teens.
God touched his mouth and put the words he wanted Jeremiah to speak in his mouth.
There’s a lesson here for us as adults: God can speak through the words and actions of youths and young adults. We must always be listening for the Lord to speak.
“I am too old.” Sarah (Genesis 18:10-14, 21:1-2, )
10And He said, “I will certainly return to you according to the time of life, and behold, Sarah your wife shall have a son.”
(Sarah was listening in the tent door which was behind him.) 11Now Abraham and Sarah were old, well advanced in age; and £Sarah had passed the age of childbearing. 12Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, “After I have grown old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?”
(New King James Version)