The Christian’s Service to God
Dear BPCWA worshipper, We had Rededication Sunday earlier in the month. I thank God for the many within BPCWA who are faithful in their church attendances not only for Sunday Worship but also at fellowships, prayer meetings, study of God’s Word, and continue to be busy in the service of the Lord. During a recent Adelphos & Adelphe Bible study, the question was asked and answered – how do we keep up? Should I give up? Why does this happen, what are the dangers, and what should we do?
Has the devotion become a drudgery? Many of you are busy in the things of the Lord both in the church and at home too – studying more of the Word in the FEBC classes, listening to our sermons on our YouTube channel, and heads of homes conducting family worship with their families, and as mothers doing their best to help bring up godly seed each day at home. At the same time, many keep very busy school or work or home schedules and endeavour to be in the church to study the Word and join the prayer meeting to pray for the kingdom’s work and each other. You understand that these are all must-dos for a Christian. We recognise the duties of all our “must-dos” and hence we have many who are taking on a lot of service and doing it diligently. Yet, perhaps inside, for some, the spiritual “must-dos” can be a drudgery. We may still be doing them, but it may only be by habit or by obligation, because we have to and not because we want to. We can even appear – freshly scrubbed, neatly dressed, Bible in hand – on the steps of the church door every Sunday morning but all the while nursing a silent grudge in our hearts wishing that we needn’t be there so that we could have had more sleep or more rest at home if not for the Service. Even while at church or while we are serving, we could be waiting for the meeting or service to be over so that we could get back to our “own life”. When we agree to do something at church, it could simply be because we know that God has given us the gifts which we must give an account of one day before Him. In reality, our heart’s attitude is just a tad better than the wicked and unsaved servant who thought of God as “an hard man” (Matt 25:24) to serve and do things for. As Christians, though we know Him as a gracious Master, we find little joy in serving our Lord. So, it is easy amidst our busy work, family, and church life to lose our bearings. When that happens, we can become tired, burnt out, and even irritable. Life is just a grind, day in and day out. Frighteningly, life can even seem quite restrictive and hence eventually miserable to some. This can lead to them wanting to just give it all up and long for a carefree, free and easy, live as I wish life, and just ignore my spiritual responsibilities.
The heart of the matter. Unless a doctor knows what is the ailment, he cannot recommend a cure. Unless we know the heart of the problem, we cannot turn around to change. I tuned in to the radio one day as I was driving home. It was of a mother who was sharing about the toils of taking care of her children. She was physically tired and worn out. Her doctor was very concerned because she had contracted a rare disease. But amidst all that she said, there was no hint that she begrudged the labour she was putting in to care for her children. She said she realised that she was quite ill, but so what? Life goes on and she has bigger things to worry about! Her mindset was mainly focused on how to manage her life and the cares of motherhood. She had a severe illness, but all she was concerned about was how to care better for her children while coping with health and surmounting financial issues. Yet, she spoke with a devotion and joy about her 2 hyperactive sons whom she was caring for all on her own. She described her endlessly busy and eventful days. Without it having to even be said, it was obvious that her motivation was that she loved her children deeply, and come what may, taking care of them was what mattered to her the most. Turning to ourselves – what is our motivation in life and why do we do what we do? Would a person naturally want to throw in the towel because he has his plate full of service? Not necessarily, because as I heard during the radio program, it struck me that even an unbeliever who had an overflowing plate can still be driven and devoted to continuing in what she was doing. Love for the one we are doing things for is the key! When there is love, we would still enjoy serving even though we may be stressed and stretched. This is the diagnosis for why we experience drudgery. Which parent – despite the pressures of work and health – would say to their child I’m too busy and it’s too expensive to maintain you, I am sick of caring for you, so go find yourself a parent to care for you. We don’t, because we love our children. But when we lose our bearings towards Christ, even if we are only serving the bare minimum, we find little to no enjoyment in the things of the Lord but would rather be doing our own things. We must learn once again to delight in God, like when we first got saved. Oh, how we loved Him with our first love. The underlying cause of our drudgery can often be traced to a waning love for Christ. When we lose our focus, we lose our compass in life and we lose the joy in what we do. We forget for whom and why we are striving in life. If a chord in this pastoral has resounded in your heart, then it is time today to take heed to the Lord’s report card –
Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. (Revelation 2:4)
Yours in our Lord’s service,