1 Corinthians 3:13-15 (KJV) Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
Caleb visited Jude but couldn’t see him because he was on a retreat. He visited again after several days and still couldn’t speak with Jude because the retreat had not ended. After some time, Caleb met Jude in the Church and asked ‘‘Jude, what were you praying for?’’ Jude put up a smile and said ‘‘I want the mantle of Apostle Paul”. Oh, that’s a great one! Caleb exclaimed.
Shortly after this Caleb and Jude were appointed by their Pastor to oversee cleaning the Church, but Jude became very sad. Why are you sad? Caleb asked. ‘‘Don’t you get it? I want to be an apostle, not a common Church cleaner” he responded.
Just like Jude, many zealous children of God have despised the current assignment God gave them for other works they consider to be more prestigious. In a bid to be celebrated as great servants of God they have created offices for themselves. Others have spent their lives desiring to be greatly used by God while abandoning the everyday assignment committed to them by Him. They do not realize that only those who are unfaithful in little can be given much, and only those who are unfaithful in another man’s work can be given their own (see Luke 16:10-12).
Apostle Paul explained that what he had done was according to the grace given to him. Neither he nor Apollos chose to be apostles; they simply followed God and became what He ordained them to be.
1 Corinthians 3:5-6 (KJV) Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man? I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
Your hard work will gain eternal relevance when in the spirit of humility and service, it is channeled in the direction of the grace given to you (1 Corinthians 15:10).
Go into today knowing that God will reward you only for the work he has sent you to do. Self-appointed assignments would count for nothing and be burned up on that day.
Prayer: ask the Lord for a humble and obedient heart.
— Dr, Emmanuel James
Yearly Bible Reading: Mark 1-2 (In Devotional Audio)
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