What would today look like if you were faithful? Faithful to use what you have been given. Faithful to appreciate what you already have. Faithful to follow through with what you know you should do. Faithful to be who you were created to be.
Jesus tells us we should strive to be called faithful. Is that what you’re striving for? Or are you striving to be skinny? Striving to be rich? Striving to be successful? Striving to be important? You see my sister, whatever you are striving for is determining how you’re showing up for life today. And if you’re striving for the wrong thing, you will be showing up all wrong. You’ll be wearing clothes that flaunt your curves instead of being the light in dark places. You will be buying all the things, but never satisfied. You will be praised, but fail to give the praise you were designed to give. You will be looking good, but feeling totally empty inside.
Oh how the world gets us wrapped up in the pursuit of everything other than being faithful. Give it to me fast. Give it to me flashy. Give it to me fancy. Give it to me front and center. But God says “I don’t want any of that. I just want you to be faithful.”
Remember the story Jesus tells of the rich boss who put each of his servants in charge of a measure of money while he went away? You can read it in Matthew 25: 14-30. To the two servants who used what they were given, the master was pleased and gave them even more. To the one who hid what he had out of fear of losing it, he was furious and took it all away from him. And in this teaching, Jesus gives us a glimpse of what God hopes to say to each of us when our journey through this life is complete, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”
Yes, this is exactly what God hopes to say to you. He wants to call you his good and faithful servant and congratulate you on a job well done. That is his good plan for your life. But he has given you free will, so every day the choice is freely yours to make. Be good and faithful, or be something else. What have you been choosing?
The problem isn’t that you ever really want to be unfaithful. You never wake up with the intention of screwing things up. No one wakes up and says, “you know, today I’m going to become a heroin addict.” Or “today I’m going to ruin my marriage.” “Today I’m going to screw up my kids.” “Today I will make horrible choices that create regret for the rest of my life.” “Today I’m going to fall so hard off this wagon that it will be impossible for me to ever get back on it.”
No one ever wakes up with those intentions, but sometimes we wake up with that reality. How does that happen?
How do we lose our way? How do we stumble and fall? How do we make such a massive mess of our lives and forget who we really are?
It’s actually quite simple … little by little, we start striving for the wrong thing. And guess what, the wrong thing doesn’t always look wrong. The wrong thing looks like just being skinny. The wrong thing looks like making that big sale. The wrong thing looks like being liked and praised.
Are any of these things wrong? No. But it’s the pursuit of anything other than being faithful that gets us off track and leads us to a life where one day we wake up and look in the mirror and don’t even recognize ourselves.
My friend Aaron Tredway sent me his brand new book titled “Don’t Miss Your Life.” He points out that Jesus didn’t say “Well done, good and successful servant.” He didn’t mention “well done, good and famous servant”, or “good and wealthy servant.” He gives us a target to aim for, and that target is GOOD AND FAITHFUL SERVANT.
Anything other than faithful is a target that leads us astray.
No one ever comes to the end of their life and says “wow, I wish I would have made more money.” I’ve never heard of anyone taking their final breath with the thought of how proud they were of their couch, or their car, or their abs. Why? Because that’s not what is important! So why, at the end of our Monday are we seeking those things?
Mother Theresa has one of those legacies we all know about, and I would assume her mansion in heaven must be the largest on the golden street. She said, “God has not called me to be successful; He has called me to be faithful.”
God has called us to be faithful … all that other stuff is gravy. It’s extra. And you know what extra can be sometimes … it can be a distraction.
All God is asking of you today is to be faithful. Simply faithful. Faithful with who he has given you to love (and in case you’re wondering, that’s everyone). Faithful with what he has already given you (and gosh, isn’t that really a whole lot). Faithful with the work you are to do. Faithful with the commitments you have made. Faithful with being who he created you to be.
It’s easy to place this pursuit of “well done, my good and faithful servant” in a position of a future pursuit. I want to hear that at the end of my life. One day when I’m old and have lived all there is to live, then I hope to hear God say this of me. But hey, what if God is coming back at the end of this day just checking.
Seriously, what if God isn’t waiting until the end of all your days to see if you have been faithful with what he has given you, what if he is checking at the end of each of your days. What if he wants an account for THIS DAY? I think he does.
And Jesus tells us what happens when the Master comes back and checks and finds you faithful … he gives you more! But if you are found to be unfaithful, he takes what little you have away because you’ve proven you can’t be trusted. Seriously, will God want to give you more based on how you lived yesterday? Think about that!
Ephesians 5:16 “Make the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.”
King James translation tells us to REDEEM OUR TIME. To redeem time meant to buy up opportunities. If you don’t buy up your opportunities, they are lost.
You don’t get back the time you waste today, my sister. How are you wasting time? How are you passing up opportunities aligned specifically for you by your Creator? REDEEM THAT!
Why? Because the days are evil. What Paul is telling us here as he writes from a prison cell, is there are many obstacles in the way of the good God has for us. There are distractions, and these distractions keep you from redeeming your time. These distractions are the pursuit of all these other things that keep us from being what God has called us to be … simply FAITHFUL.
Imagine if Mother Theresa would have pursued being successful over being faithful. All those lives that would have gone untouched. All that love that would have never become tangible. But her pursuit of being a good and faithful servant changed the world, every single day.
What would your pursuit of being a good and faithful servant do? I promise it would do so much more than you being a skinny servant, or a wealthy servant, or a successful servant, or a famous servant.
Don’t be distracted today. Don’t let this world pull you in it’s evil directions with obstacles in the way of the good God has for you. Don’t let the enemy complicate this and confuse you.
Being faithful is quite simple.
With every choice you make today, consider what being faithful in that moment would look like. Being faithful will have you making the most of every opportunity and redeeming your time to the max! Being faithful will have you making choices you can feel good about at the end of this day. Being faithful will have you walking in the light of God, instead of hiding in the darkness of shame, guilt and regret.
Faithful is who you were created to be, and when you step into it, you will know because it fits just perfect and feels right!
So when God comes around and checks in at the end of this day, will he be able to say, “that’s my girl, she was my good and faithful servant today.” He sure is hoping so, because he has so much more he wants to give you!