Helping not unnoticed

helping hand

Image by jenny downing via Flickr

God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them. – Hebrews 6:10

Maggie carried the groceries into her mother’s apartment and set them on the yellow counter. Yellow seemed like an odd color for a counter, but if it made her mother happy, so be it. She wondered if her mother was still napping in her room. She had to admit that the quiet was nice…actually, the time free of complaining was nice. Maggie stacked the can goods in the pantry with the labels in front knowing that it still wouldn’t be good enough. It’s not that she didn’t love her mother. It’s just that it seems no matter what she does, it doesn’t help her, and sometimes it seems worse for her mother.

“Maggie, is that you in the kitchen?” her mother’s voice called from the bedroom.

“Yes, Mother, I just returned from the store and I’m putting away the groceries.”

“Put them where I can find them.”

Stopping to hold her breathe a second before responding, “Yes, Mother.”

Sometimes it seems like we work and work to help people and serve God, but feel like we aren’t really helping or we’re not appreciated. But the truth is that everything we do for the Lord is noted and not forgotten. Human responses may or may not happen, and we can’t let that deter us. It is the Lord we serve in all we do. His response is all that matters.

Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for the promise of not forgetting me. I know it is you that equips and gives opportunities of service. I praise you for inviting me to work with you in helping others. I pray that I keep my focus on what you are doing and not what I expect from others. Amen

Faith Tip: Where are you helping others and feeling unappreciated or like you’re not making a difference? The truth is that you are. God is with you and you should feel special when he chooses you to serve. Maybe today there will be a call for you. God will not forget about you.

Wanting to serve

“I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May it be to me as you have said.” (Luke 1:38)

Some tasks are not as fun as other ones. Housecleaning can be a drag, but the result is having a nice clean house to live in. Planting a garden is a lot of work, but the result is lovely flowers or good things to eat from the garden. School work can be laborious at times, but the result is learning a lot of things to use later in life.

The Lord at times will ask us to do something that we may not consider a pleasure to do. We sometimes forget to look at the result of what we will accomplish. When Mary was told about becoming with child, this probably brought her some distress knowing that she was a virgin and pledged to be married. Her response to God is powerful. “I am the Lord’s servant” This young lady had it figured out to do what the Lord has asked. What was the result of her obedience? Jesus. Good results always come from the requests and commands of God.

Let us apply to our lives the same kind of surrender to God as Mary modeled. When asked by God to do something that may not seem easy or pleasurable, let our response be “I am the Lord’s servant,” and not forget the good results that will come from our obedience.

Prayer: Dear Lord, how often you have asked me to do something for you, and my response has not always been pleasing. Forgive me and create in me a new heart for you that will listen and obey.

Faith Tip: Listen for what God has for you to do for him today…respond with “I am the Lord’s servant.”

Offensive Opportunities

I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. (Matthew 5:39)

As a Christian writer, I experience times when readers who are not Christian feel offended by my sharing of God’s truth, and they let me know about it. We have all been there—insulted, misunderstood, mistreated, maligned, and more. Justice seems out of reach. What about our rights? What does Jesus say? Sometimes his teachings are tough. I believe Jesus wants it to become part of our nature to forgive the offense and shine the light of Christ to the offender by showing them God’s love. There is no instruction on making sure our rights are met, or that we get justice. However, the Bible does say that we are to give justice.

Prayer: Lord, I know your word is true and that your plan is best. I pray that I can show your love at those times when it’s difficult. You have experienced it all, and still loved and forgave us. May that become a part of my nature, so others see you in me. Amen.

Faith tip: Make a decision at the beginning of today of how you will respond to an offense. You may be given the opportunity to show the light of Christ.