Simplify to Magnify
Posted on May 19, 2020 by Catey Stover in Victory Call
I brought glory to you here on earth by completing the work you gave me to do. (John 17:4 NLT)
Have you ever reflected on how Christ walked this earth for only thirty-three brief years, yet could proclaim at His life’s end that He had finished the work that His Father had given Him to do? Christ obeyed the Father consistently and completely, yet frequently didn’t fulfill the expectations of those closest to Him. And although we’re not the perfectly obedient, sinless Son of God, each of us has individual work that we have the privilege of doing as God’s children. Yet, just like Martha, we can get “worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one” (Luke 10:41-42a).
I started to meditate on all this over a decade ago while frustratingly trying to balance working 12-hour rotating shifts as a police officer along with living faithfully in other important spheres of life – especially in my closest relationships. I remember feeling as if I never had enough time in a day to do everything that I needed to do. Resigning from my job, while a future goal, wasn’t a viable option at the time; although our four children were already in our home, we were waiting (for several years) for their adoptions to go through as a necessary prerequisite to laying down my job in a way with which my husband was comfortable.
Hemmed in and seemingly at the mercy of stalled circumstances, I was at the point of feeling exasperated, perplexed and….exhausted! My desperate heart was fertile soil for the truth that everything is for a reason and a season; each day I too could do the work or things that my Heavenly Father was calling me to do (Notice the qualifier!). And there would always be things that I, or others, wanted me to do that would remain undone at a day’s end. And although these truths didn’t bear fruit instantaneously, harvest came increasingly and continues thankfully. Truth surely does set free as we appropriate it!
So how are you doing in this area? Do circumstances, schedules, lists, expectations, opinions, and demands tend to call the shots as you react to life, or are you more of a reflective responder like Jesus who, freed from the shackles of false guilt and others’ expectations, communed with and surrendered to the Father daily? Either way, be encouraged that you not only have all the time that you need, but that you are exquisitely crafted, uniquely skilled, spiritually enabled and aptly gifted for all that Father has appointed for you to do in this time and in this place (Ephesians 2:10; Acts 17:26; 2 Timothy 2:21; 3:17; 1 Peter 4:10). He is not looking for perfect, harried stewards – only faithful, responsive ones (Matthew 25: 23). May we simplify our lives and walk so that we can best exalt our incomparable God who lives in us, walks with us and works through us!
Written by Melissa Smith: Melissa Smith is the Women’s ENRICH Counselor at America’s Keswick. She has the privilege and honor of ministering to the Colony men’s wives and girlfriends, the Barbara’s Place women, and community women who God brings to America’s Keswick for help or care. She and Bill, her husband of 20 years, have four grown, wonderful adopted children. Her fervent desire is to point women to Christ and His sufficiency, provision, and promises.
Think About This: “Faith, as Paul saw it, was a living, flaming thing leading to surrender and obedience to the commandments of Christ.” – A.W. Tozer
This Week’s Verse to Memorize: “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 [c]Because narrow is the gate and [d]difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it. –Matthew 7:13-14
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the doctrinal and theological views held by America’s Keswick.