Wednesday, October 28, 2015


There is a particular verse in the Bible that never fails to convict me, and, at the same time, motivate me.  It is found in the Book of Romans, chapter 12 and verse 11: Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.” [NIV] The Living New Testament is a little more common and confrontational in the way it says it: Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically.”
I am grateful for the work ethic instilled in my by my parents.  They set the example with their ‘early to bed and early to arise’ approach to daily life.  As a rule, my little brother and I were not allowed to sleep in, even on Saturday mornings.  And, we were not allowed to stay up late, even on Friday nights.  We had ‘chores’ to do. [Now that’s a word you don’t hear much anymore!]  When the basement flooded, Dave and I were the ‘drop and mop’ brigade.  When the green beans and strawberries were ready, we were the two-man picking, snapping and stemming crew.  In the summers I could play Little League baseball in the evenings as long as I worked during the daytime cutting corn out of the beans and weeds out of the corn for a farmer in our church.  But I have to say, as a result of the diligence and persistence by my parents, I got it… probably too well.  My problem has been achieving balance from the other direction.  I used to feel guilty for taking a day off.  I used to think I was a ‘shirker’ when I would take a vacation.  Through the years I have mellowed some.  I have no problem now, taking a Sabbath day once a week and a Sabbath week at least once a quarter every year. 
But, here’s the thing: For me, serving the Lord has never felt like work.  There is something that is regenerating in the process of working hard for God purpose.  And I am thankful that there is no mandatory retirement age for doing ministry.  I can do it voluntarily even after I have ceased to do it vocationally.  In fact, there are always positions open to anyone and everyone.  My 97-year old mother is in a retirement facility, but she has a prayer ministry, a teaching ministry, a reading to the visually impaired ministry, an encouragement ministry that she discharges daily for the benefit of the other residents.  I am still, to this day, challenged by her example of selfless service.
Pray with me…Father God, Jesus is the Lord of the harvest.  Help us to resolve never to be tired in or retired from His service as along as we live… because He is working with us as we make ourselves available to Him.  In His name we humbly pray, amen.

Pastor Ken

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