Breakfast was finished and my husband said to our 9 year old, "You can get the table cleared off please."
She instantly replied with, "Why do I have to do it?"
From the other side of the table, her big brother eagerly replied, "Well, dad told you to do it, so it's your job."
As the Mom, I took this as a teachable moment and spoke to J.D. "Just like last night when Dad gave you the job of plowing." This instantly stopped the conversation because he knew exactly what I was getting at...he was enjoying getting after his sister for whining about a job when just 12 hours earlier he had done the exact same thing.
Though the words between siblings ended, a conversation continued in my head. As I finished talking with the kids about accepting our jobs and doing the work responsibly without comparing it to everyone else, God spoke to my heart.
The Holy Spirit brought to mind things God was calling me to do - things I was avoiding, things I considered too hard, things I thought someone else could do better. As I spoke with my kids about obeying their dad, I was convicted to obey our heavenly Father.
Friend, we may no longer whine like a child does or grumble to others about the work we are given, but sometimes we don't obey. Stop for a minute and think about what God is calling you to do. Has He led you to step out of your comfort zone? Is He calling you to forgive? Is He asking you to serve one who's never grateful? Does He want you to stand up for your faith, for Him, when others won't understand? Is He telling you to love the unlovable? I don't know what it is, but I'm guessing you do.
Now think about your response. Can you relate to my Jaylyn? Are you looking around and seeing others not having to do what you do? Are you like my son and wonder why you always get the hard job? Are you like me and are afraid, finding yourself stuck in fear when you should be walking in faith? Again, I don't know, but God does. He sees our response, He knows our heart. He wants our obedience.
My son's words have come to mind a few times through the day and I can still hear him saying, "Well, Dad told YOU to do it." The Dad I think of is God, our Abba Father. The "it" isn't important...it doesn't matter if it's something BIG or small, something easy or hard, something new or a mundane task...when God calls us to do it, we are to obey.
You don't have to take my word on this, God's Word has much to say about our obedience. Here are a few verses that come to my mind and speak to my heart...
"Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful." Joshua 1:8
"Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says." James 1:22
Scripture clearly tells us what we are and are not to do. The Holy Spirit will help us discern the Word, but knowing is not enough...we must do what we know.
"You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you." John 15:16
Friend, God has work for you and me to do. He gives us roles and responsibilities for a reason - the things we do for Him and through Him produce fruit. He created us, chose us and knows us...He will be faithful to equip us and use us.
"Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain." 1 Corinthians 15:58
The things God calls us to won't be easy, sometimes they won't seem fair and they will often bring opposition from the enemy, but we must remember the bigger picture. God has a plan and He will use, and reward, our obedience.
Regardless of what "job" you have today, I pray, like me, you hear your heavenly Father telling you to do it. And then I pray we respond rightly and obey with hearts that are humble, hands ready to serve, feet ready to walk and a mouth willing to speak up or remain silent.
Heavenly Father, You are my Abba and I'm grateful. May I always remember the joy and privilege it is to be your chosen child. As a mom I know children have responsibilities; one of the most important is to obey their parents. Lord, I ask you for a heart willing to obey. Keep my eyes focused on you, don't let my heart compare or my mind worry. I pray for strength and boldness and ask for gratitude instead of grumbling. The next time you speak, may my words be a quick, "Here am I Lord" followed up by "I am the Lord's servant, may it be as you have said." I love you Lord and long to serve you and you alone. In Jesus' precious and powerful name, Amen"